AppMesh: Making Microservices Work – Together

There is no silver bullet for handling microservices complexity, but there is a way to gain control over them – it’s called AppMesh.

Ann Marie Bond Ann Marie Bond

There is no silver bullet for handling microservices complexity, but there is a way to gain control over them – it’s called AppMesh.

The megatrend of moving IT to the cloud in the past few years has driven the adoption of SaaS applications and an evolution in software architecture.  Distributed architectures, such as those running on Docker containers in public cloud services, are now a new standard.  In these architectures, microservices, which are specialized business services with minimal reliance on other services, are an ideal solution. But working with microservices has brought about many new challenges for IT. 

Beyond the software development task of breaking large applications into individual microservices – that each serve a single purpose – there are new functional problems that didn’t exist before: When services aren’t running in the same container, how do they communicate?   How do you mitigate the unpredictability of cloud containers?  How do you protect access to your individual services?

Users need the ability to leverage microservices to quickly add new applications without having to be concerned about these operational challenges.

Many organizations building these distributed applications have started using a service mesh, which is a dedicated infrastructure layer, to provide service-to-service communication, load-balancing for unexpected outages, and security from a central location.  But service mesh offers only the fundamental network-level control.  You can’t do segmentation of your consumers to optimize products for different groups.  It’s hard to tell who’s using your apps and what they’re doing.   And you can’t provide advanced user authorization or protection for private data that might be embedded in the service request.  You need to manage not just services, but customer experience for distributed applications.

How can you gain control over these? What you want is to be able to add rules, or policies, that control how an application behaves without affecting individual services.  With policies you can modify data inputs, apply intelligent routing, use sophisticated decision-making logic, enhance user security, and ensure private data protection without changing a single line of code.

This is why you need webMethods AppMesh. It combines webMethods API Gateway and webMethods Microgateway and is integrated with Istio Service Mesh.  Microgateways are deployed with each microservice.  They plug into the Istio Service Mesh seamlessly and are managed from the API Gateway. 

The Microgateway can apply policies to intercept and modify data before it is passed through to a service, redirect the service, impose security controls, and more.  The API Gateway acts as the central hub for viewing and analyzing the behavior of all the services that belong to an app.

The AppMesh is the only solution that enables you to manage all your policies centrally, whether they are network-level policies implemented by the service mesh or application-level policies handled by the webMethods Microgateway.  And it’s the only solution that enables you to do so with policies instead of complex scripting files.  With the webMethods AppMesh, you regain control.