A method is described of operating a computer in a network of computers using an improved load balancing technique. Logical links are generated between the computer and other computers in the network so that a tree structure is formed, the computer being logically linked to one computer higher up the tree and a number of computers lower down the tree. Stored information is maintained in the computer regarding the current load on the computer and the load on at least some of the other computers in the network by causing the computer periodically to distribute the information to the computers to which it is logically linked, and to receive from the computers similar such information and to update its own information in accordance therewith, so that the information can be used to determine a computer in the network that can accept extra load. A sender-initiated embodiment of the invention includes the further step of, when the computer is overloaded, using the information to determine a computer that can accept extra load and transferring at least one task to that computer. The load balancing technique is scalable, fault tolerant, flexible and supports clustering, thus making it suitable for use in networks having very large numbers of computers.