NGINX Service Mesh with Alan Murphy

NGINX is a web server that is used as a load balancer, an API gateway, a reverse proxy, and other purposes. Core application servers such as Ruby on Rails are often supported by NGINX, which handles routing the user requests between the different application server instances. 

This model of routing and load balancing between different application instances has matured over the last ten years due to an increase in the number of servers, and an increase in the variety of services. 

A pattern called “service mesh” has grown in popularity and is used to embed routing infrastructure closer to individual services by giving them a sidecar proxy. The application sidecars are connected to each other, and requests between any two services are routed through a proxy. These different proxies are managed by a central control plane which manages policies of the different proxies.

Alan Murphy works at NGINX, and he joins the show to give a brief history of NGINX and how the product has evolved from a reverse proxy and edge routing tool to a service mesh. Alan has worked in the world of load balancing and routing for more than a decade, having been at F5 Networks for many years before F5 acquired NGINX. We also discussed the business motivations behind the merger of those two companies. Full disclosure: NGINX is a sponsor of Software Engineering Daily.

Sponsorship inquiries:


Transcript provided by We Edit Podcasts. Software Engineering Daily listeners can go to to get 20% off the first two months of audio editing and transcription services. Thanks to We Edit Podcasts for partnering with SE Daily. Please click here to view this show’s transcript.


G2i is a hiring platform run by engineers that matches you with React, React Native, GraphQL, and mobile engineers who you can trust. Whether you are a new company building your first product or an established company that wants additional engineering help, G2i has the talent you need to accomplish your goals. Go to

From their recent report on serverless adoption and trends, Datadog found half of their customer base using EC2s have now adopted AWS Lambda. You can easily monitor all your serverless functions in one place and generate serverless metrics straight from Datadog. Check it out yourself by signing up for a free 14-day trial and get a free t-shirt at

Vettery is an online hiring marketplace that connects highly qualified workers with top companies. Vettery keeps the quality of workers and companies on the platform high, because they vet both workers and companies. Check out, and get a $300 sign-up bonus if you accept a job through Vettery.

We’re happy to have NGINX as a sponsor of Software Engineering Daily. NGINX is not only used for load balancing and routing, but also real-time API management, API gateway, service mesh and more. To hear more about what Alan Murphy discussed around Service Mesh, visit for webinars and other resources that describe how NGINX works and how it can be used to solve problems in your infrastructure.

Software Weekly

Software Weekly

Subscribe to Software Weekly, a curated weekly newsletter featuring the best and newest from the software engineering community.