Linkerd Service Mesh with William Morgan

Software products are distributed across more and more servers as they grow. With the proliferation of cloud providers like AWS, these large infrastructure deployments have become much easier to create. With the maturity of Kubernetes, these distributed applications are more reliable.

Developers and operators can use a service mesh to manage the interactions between services across this distributed application.

A service mesh is a layer across a distributed microservices application that consists of service proxy sidecars running alongside each service in a cluster, along with a central control plane for communicating with those sidecar proxies.

A service mesh has many uses. Every request and response within the application gets routed through the service proxy, which can improve observability, traffic control to different instances, and circuit breaking in case of an instance failure. The central control plane can be used manage network policy throughout the whole system.

We have done shows about each of the different components of a service mesh system, including different types of service proxies, as well as the service meshes built on top of these proxies.

Linkerd, which is made by the startup Buoyant, was the first service mesh product to come to market, and it has the most production use, with customers like Expedia and Monzo bank. Istio is a more recent service mesh which uses the Envoy service proxy. Istio came out of Google and is also supported by IBM—setting up a classic competition between a startup and the large incumbents.

William Morgan is the CEO of Buoyant, and he joins the show to talk about the use cases and adoption of service mesh. He also talks about the business landscape of the service mesh category, and how to compete with giant cloud providers.


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