SkyWalking service topology
Apache SkyWalking, Observability, Open Source

Observability at scale: SkyWalking it is!

SkyWalking, a top-level Apache project, is the open source APM and observability analysis platform that is solving the problems of 21st-century systems that are increasingly large, distributed, and heterogenous. It’s built for the struggles system admins face today: To identify and locate needles in a haystack of interdependent services, to get apples-to-apples metrics across polyglot apps, and to get a complete and meaningful view of performance. 

SkyWalking is a holistic platform that can observe microservices on or off a mesh, and can provide consistent monitoring with a lightweight payload.

Let’s take a look at how SkyWalking evolved to address the problem of observability at scale, and grew from a pure tracing system to a feature-rich observability platform that is now used to analyze deployments that collect tens of billions of traces per day. 

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Washington DC Memorial Bridge at dusk
Istio, Service Mesh, Tetrate

Bridging Traditional and Modern Workloads

So many organizations find themselves straddling two worlds, the older ‘brownfield’ setup of Virtual Machines (VMs) and bare metal servers, and the ‘greenfield’ world of containers managed by Kubernetes. Managing a hybrid structure of these two types of infrastructures has a history of being time-consuming and complex, with an overburden on engineering to duplicate efforts. 

The addition of a service mesh to any environment that straddles ‘old’ and ‘new’ allows you to abstract away from disparate infrastructures and refocus your organization to being an application-centric entity. 

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Boats moored in a marina
Istio, Service Mesh, Tetrate

VM to container communications 101

How do Virtual Machines and containers talk to each other? How does an Istio mesh make that process easier? Since Istio’s 1.6 release, which has helped bring VMs under control of the mesh, it becomes significantly easier. Istio’s aim as a project is to make life easier, and give organizations a single point of control.  

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Envoy's Postgres filter - Network observability
Envoy proxy & GetEnvoy, Observability, Open Source

How to use Envoy’s Postgres filter for network observability

Starting with release 1.15.0 Envoy proxy supports decoding of Postgres messages for statistics purposes. This feature allows for an aggregated view of the types of Postgres transactions happening in the network. That aggregated view instantly provides a breakdown of types of Postgres operations and the number and severity of errors. Presented in a time series format allows for a clear overview of how the error rate of composition of queries changed over time.

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