Weaveworks is pleased to announce our participation in the recently launched Istio open source project developed by Google, IBM and Lyft.  

Istio is an open service mesh and it manages and synchronizes the flow of traffic between deployed microservices with load balancing, service-to-service authentication, monitoring -- all without requiring any code changes. The Istio service mesh secures and encrypts policies across networks and also aggregates multidimensional data and makes it available for monitoring and troubleshooting by third-party apps.  

The Istio control plane provides an abstraction layer over the underlying cluster management platform, such as Kubernetes. It currently only supports service deployment on Kubernetes, though other environments are planned in future versions.

For more information about Istio, see Introducing Istio: A robust service mesh for microservices

To add Istio support to your microservices, special sidecar proxies are deployed throughout your environment. The sidecars are responsible for intercepting network communications between services.  

Although Istio is designed to abstract and manage some of the complexity in deploying microservices to a cluster, being able to visualize, drill down and examine aspects of such a deployment can be daunting on its own.  But by using Weave Cloud you can quickly understand a service mesh like Istio and take advantage of its benefits.  

New Tutorial: Weave Cloud & Istio

In the Weave Cloud and Istio tutorial, we show you how to configure Istio for microservices and how to use Weave Cloud to explore and monitor the traffic flow between the microservices as it runs in the service mesh. 

With Weave Cloud, you can learn about Istio and how your app responds to it in real-time:  

  • Observe how Istio takes advantage of sidecars for each of your application containers, and verify the flow of traffic as it’s being routed from your application through the proxy sidecars.
  • Visualize, and understand how Istio works by seeing the before and after changes that Istio’s kube-inject makes to your app.
  • Weave Cloud monitor hosts Prometheus for you, so you don’t have to worry about scaling your Prometheus instances or even managing its data storage within your Kubernetes cluster. Weave Cloud provides 13 months of data storage.
  • Weave Cloud monitor also provides a superior user experience for exploring available Prometheus metrics and makes it easy to construct PromQL queries 
  • The same Grafana dashboard that is bundled with Istio can be used out-of-the-box to query metrics all from within Weave Cloud.

Watch the video overview on how Weave Cloud can help you understand Istio: 

And then follow this step-by-step tutorial and learn about Istio and Weave Cloud for yourself. 

Thank you for reading our blog. We build Weave Cloud, which is a hosted add-on to your clusters. It helps you iterate faster on microservices with continuous delivery, visualization & debugging, and Prometheus monitoring to improve observability.

Try it out, join our online user group for free talks & trainings, and come and hang out with us on Slack.