MICROSOFT LAUNCHES, Open-Source Service Mesh!


Microsoft launches

Last week, OS giant Microsoft launched an open service mesh. An open-source service mesh based on the Envoy proxy, which will be a reference implementation of the Service Mesh Interface (SMI) specification, and will also function as a standard interface for service meshes backed by the majority of players on the Kubernetes ecosystem.

In a bid to ensure that the new system is community-led with open governance, the company has moved to donate Open Service Mesh to the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF). It’s understood, there are a good number of various service mesh technologies readily accessible in the market today, while on the other hand, it’s important to figure out why Microsoft took the step to launch this!

Based on this development, TechCrunch also learned from Microsoft director of partner management for Azure Compute ‘Gabe Monroy’ that “SMI is really resonating with folks and so we really thought that there was room in the ecosystem for a reference implementation of SMI where the mesh technology was first and foremost implementing those SMI APIs and making it the best possible SMI experience for customers”.

While in addition to Microsoft launching open service mesh is also because Service Mesh Interface provides the lowest common denominator API design, and, on the other hand, Open Service Mesh grants users the ability to “bail out” to raw Envoy if they need some more advanced features. The director of partner management for Azure in an explanation noted “no cliffs” design, which is also vital to the philosophy behind Open Service Mesh.

Should the search and Android giant move in this direction to donate its Istio service mesh to the CNCF? Some had expected but didn’t materialize, possibly due to customers’ interest and overall experience. However, looking at the set of features of this newly launched service, Service Mesh Interface practically handles the entire standard service mesh feature that one should expect, in addition to securing communications between services with the aid of mTLS, service monitoring, managing access control policies and more.

To ascertain how simple and define open service mesh could be, it became necessary to take a look at the complexity of Google’s Istio. However, Monroy in its explanation made it clear that “what our customers have been telling us is that solutions that are out there today, Istio being a good example, are extremely complex”, adding that, “it’s not just me saying this. We see the data in the AKS support queue of customers who are trying to use this stuff – and they’re struggling right here. This is just hard technology to use, hard technology to build at scale. And so the solutions that were out there all had something that wasn’t quite right and we really felt like something lighter weight and something with more of an SMI focus was what was going to hit the sweet spot for the customers that are dabbling in this technology today”.

Also to note is that this Microsoft service could potentially sit alongside other solutions.

What’s your take on Microsoft launching open service mesh?