Istio, Lyft Envoy, and microservices

Since its release, we’ve been big fans of the Envoy Proxy for adding resilience and observability to microservice architectures. In a short period of time, Envoy has garnered impressive community momentum to go alongside its battle-tested functionality. However, Envoy, while powerful, is a complex piece of software that requires substantial supporting infrastructure to deploy at scale. While some of the simpler use cases can be addressed with documentation, realizing the true promise of Envoy as an infrastructure layer transparent to your developers yet configurable by operations requires substantial amount of additional engineering.

Until today.

Istio

Istio is a service mesh for microservices, built on Lyft Envoy. Istio lets organizations transparently add an infrastructure layer between microservices and the network to add resilience and observability. Behind the scenes, Istio deploys an Envoy proxy next to each of your application instances. All of your traffic is routed and managed by Envoy. An Istio deployment can involve hundreds or thousands of Envoy proxies, so Envoy’s data plane APIs are used to dynamically manage the fleet of Envoys. With Istio, organizations can adopt a state-of-the-art service mesh without the bespoke engineering required today.

Istio is shipping its inaugural 0.1 release today. At Datawire, we’re thrilled to announce that we’re joining the open source Istio community and support its goals. Led by Lyft, Google, and IBM, the Istio team has rapidly built a powerful, sophisticated infrastructure for microservices. We’ve seen firsthand the importance of resilience and observability in a microservices architecture, and are excited about the vision and approach of the Istio project.

Ambassador

We released Ambassador, an API Gateway built on Envoy, a few weeks ago. Today, we’re releasing a new version of Ambassador that integrates with Istio. With Ambassador and Istio, organizations can seamlessly route external traffic directly into an Istio-powered service mesh, and transparently extend layer 7 resilience, observability, and security to the edge.

The open source ecosystem around microservices infrastructure continues to evolve rapidly. We’re excited to be a part of the community.