What is a service mesh ?


A service mesh is a tool for adding observability, security, and reliability features to applications by inserting these features at the platform layer rather than the application layer. The service mesh is typically implemented as a scalable set of network proxies deployed alongside application code (a pattern sometimes called a sidecar). These proxies handle the communication between the microservices and also act as a point at which the service mesh features can be introduced. 

William Morgan, Buoyant – What is a service mesh? And why do I need one ?


service mesh is a configurable, low‑latency infrastructure layer designed to handle a high volume of network‑based interprocess communication among application infrastructure services using application programming interfaces (APIs). A service mesh ensures that communication among containerized and often ephemeral application infrastructure services is fast, reliable, and secure. The mesh provides critical capabilities including service discovery, load balancing, encryption, observability, traceability, authentication and authorization, and support for the circuit breaker pattern. The service mesh is usually implemented by providing a proxy instance, called a sidecar, for each service instance. Sidecars handle interservice communications, monitoring, and security‑related concerns – indeed, anything that can be abstracted away from the individual services.

NGINX – What is a service mesh ?

Red Hat:

A service mesh, like the open source project Istio, is a way to control how different parts of an application share data with one another. Unlike other systems for managing this communication, a service mesh is a dedicated infrastructure layer built right into an app. This visible infrastructure layer can document how well (or not) different parts of an app interact, so it becomes easier to optimize communication and avoid downtime as an app grows … Without a service mesh, each microservice needs to be coded with logic to govern service-to-service communication, which means developers are less focused on business goals. It also means communication failures are harder to diagnose because the logic that governs interservice communication is hidden within each service.

Red Hat – What is a service mesh ?

Other References

  1. Microservice Service Discovery: API Gateway or Service Mesh?

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