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Nov 2018

When building and operating a microservices ecosystem, one of the early questions to answer is how to implement cross-cutting concerns such as service discovery, service-to-service and origin-to-service security, observability (including telemetry and distributed tracing), rolling releases and resiliency. Over the last couple of years, our default answer to this question has been using a service mesh technique. A service mesh offers the implementation of these cross-cutting capabilities as an infrastructure layer that is configured as code. The policy configurations can be consistently applied to the whole ecosystem of microservices; enforced on both in and out of mesh traffic (via the mesh proxy as a gateway) as well as on the traffic at each service (via the same mesh proxy as a sidecar container). While we're keeping a close eye on the progress of different open source service mesh projects such as Linkerd, we've successfully used Istio in production with a surprisingly easy-to-configure operating model.