Istio, Open Source

The debate in the community about Istio and service mesh

You can use Istio to do multi-cluster management, API Gateway, and manage applications on Kubernetes or virtual machines. In my last blog, I talked about how service mesh is an integral part of cloud native applications. However, building infrastructure can be a big deal. There is no shortage of debate in the community about the practicability of service mesh and Istio– here’s a list of common questions and concerns, and how to address them.

  • Is anyone using Istio in production?
  • What is the impact on application performance due to the many resources consumed by injecting sidecar into the pod?
  • Istio supports a limited number of protocols; is it scalable?
  • Will Istio be manageable? – Or is it too complex, old services too costly to migrate, and the learning curve too steep?

I will answer each of these questions below.

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API Gateway, Istio, Service Mesh

Using Istio service mesh as API Gateway

API gateways have been around for a long time as the entry point for clients to access the back-end, mainly to manage “north-south” traffic, In recent years, service mesh architectures have become popular, mainly for managing internal systems,(i.e. “east-west” traffic), while a service mesh like Istio also has built-in gateways that bring traffic inside and outside the system under unified control. This often creates confusion for first-time users of Istio. What is the relationship between the service mesh and the API gateway? How does Istio’s gateway work? What are the ways to expose the services in the Istio mesh? This article gives you the answer.

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Service Mesh, Tetrate

Multicluster Management with Kubernetes and Istio

Do you have multiple Kubernetes clusters and a service mesh? Do your virtual machines and services in a Kubernetes cluster need to interact? This article will take you through the process and considerations of building a hybrid cloud using Kubernetes and an Istio Service Mesh. Together, Kubernetes and Istio can be used to bring hybrid workloads into a mesh and achieve interoperability for multicluster. But another layer of infrastructure — a management plane — is helpful for managing multicluster or multimesh deployments.

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Digital Transformation
Service Mesh

Why do you need Istio when you already have Kubernetes?

If you’ve heard of service mesh and tried Istio, you may have the following questions:

  1. Why is Istio running on Kubernetes?
  2. What is the role of Kubernetes and a service mesh in the cloud-native application architecture, respectively?
  3. What aspects of Kubernetes does Istio extend? What problems does it solve?
  4. What is the relationship between Kubernetes, Envoy, and Istio?

This article will take you through the inner workings of Kubernetes and Istio. In addition, I will introduce the load balancing approach in Kubernetes, and explain why you need Istio when you have Kubernetes.

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