Service Mesh Microservice: A Quick Overview

What is a Service Mesh Microservice?

A service mesh is a communication management method for separate services in a microservice-based system.

Businesses are increasingly using Kubernetes, microservices, and containers. The main drivers of this expansion are the need for modernization and increased developer productivity, scalability, and app agility. Existing and new services and applications are adopting a distributed microservice architecture. Monolithic applications incorporate multiple functions into a single software and are time-consuming to develop and launch. Although it is simpler to construct independent services using the microservices design, complexity is also added to or increased.


In a monolithic program, all function-to-function calls are secure within the monolith. Consider the methods used by microservices for encryption, communication, and authentication. Consider the additional auditing resources needed to monitor service-to-service interactions as well.

Network Robustness

When many services communicate to produce a response in distributed systems, consider the effects of latency and overall response time. Also, take into account fault tolerance. How can a distributed architecture prevent the failure of one service from cascading into the failure of another?

Communication Strategy

In distributed systems, some services could become reliant on or a bottleneck for other services. A malicious service making numerous calls may not overwhelm the services it calls if network regulations governing limits and rate constraints for all services are in place. To adequately govern them, create regulations that specify which services may and cannot make calls.


Contrary to monolithic programs, microservice-based designs place a higher value on observability. In monolithic programs, log files are sufficient for locating the issue. In a microservices architecture, several services may work on a single request. Any service contained within the architecture is prone to sluggishness, mistakes, and failures. Developers need distributed tracing, topology, network metrics, and logging to investigate and identify problems.

Why do these Issues Affect Businesses More Frequently?

A few applications can easily be separated into microservices to manage security, network resiliency, policy, and observability challenges. There could be dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of microservices used by a business. Every solution must therefore be scalable. If not properly utilized, the complexity of systems and the sheer number of microservices increase the reliance on such services.

How do Service Meshes Work?

On top of the infrastructure layer, a platform layer known as a service mesh enables controlled, observable, and secure communication between various services. Companies or individuals can use this platform layer to create complex corporate programs on a particular infrastructure comprising several microservices. Service meshes use standardized technologies to address typical security, networking, and monitoring problems. Now that there are solutions for challenges specific to each service, service providers and administrators may concentrate on creating and overseeing apps for their users.

The service meshes are invisible to the application. The service mesh uses a proxy to track all traffic. The proxy is introduced to the microservices via the sidecar pattern. By separating network functions from an application or business logic, developers may concentrate on the business's capabilities. The division of labor between the development and operations teams is also made possible by service meshes.

Features and Capabilities

Service meshes provide specific functionality to manage and control the communication connections between services. A portion of this functionality is covered in the subsections that follow.


The multi-tenancy deployment approach isolates those groups from one another when a tenant only utilizes a certain collection of microservices. Multi-tenancy is frequently used to isolate services between two distinct organizational departments or to isolate entire enterprises. The intention is to offer each tenant-specific service. The services of other tenants are either unavailable or just partially accessible.

Infrastructure that one tenant exclusively uses is the most fundamental form of multi-tenancy. Without needing to share infrastructure, each tenant gets access to their own network, computation, storage, and extra capabilities like Kubernetes and microservices. Although theoretically possible, multi-tenancy of this kind typically wastes infrastructure. It is more effective to share infrastructure among tenants and use service mesh configuration and policies to keep them apart.

Namespace or cluster tenancy are the two tenancy types on which service mesh multi-tenancy is based.

Tenancy of Namespaces

According to the namespace tenancy form, each tenant is assigned a certain namespace inside a cluster. Infrastructure sharing is maximized by namespace tenancy since each cluster can support several tenants.

Use service-mesh-authorization settings to restrict communication between the services of various tenants and only expose a portion of the services outside the namespace (via a sidecar configuration). For each service that is provided, a unique namespace should be created. Only permitted tenants have access to each other's services since access to each service is authorized. Multi-mesh federation is not required for this use case; however, it can be helpful.

A namespace might have support for one or more clusters. The supporting clusters of the namespace do not influence the tenancy, which is solely determined by the namespace. In practice, a namespace can be shared by two distinct service meshes. One service mesh represents a staging tenant, and another service mesh represents a production tenant to illustrate this notion. A customer namespace is possible for both. This name scheme is inappropriate due to its ambiguity.

Multiple Tenancy

The cluster tenancy form assigns a single tenant complete ownership of the cluster, including all namespaces. A tenant could also be the owner of several clusters. Every cluster has a unique mesh.

Tenant resource sharing is not a true characteristic of multi-tenancy; cluster tenancy refers to separation on a cluster level. It is nonetheless mentioned in the Istio tenancy model specification; thus, it is included here.


Regardless matter the style of architecture, security is essential. Microservices require more security than other types of designs. Examples include managing traffic flow between microservices and enabling authentication. Service meshes satisfy these requirements with their security characteristics.

Traditional network security is built around a strong perimeter, which helps to thwart unauthorized entry. Users are treated as trustworthy actors and permitted to communicate without having to prove their identities when they enter the network border.

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