API Management in Cloud

API is an acronym for Application Programming Interface. In the perspective of APIs, the word application refers to every software that performs a specific function. API management involves the practice of creating, publication, documenting and assessing APIs in a secure environment.

With the proper isolation and separation of responsibilities, a layered strategy using an API management, enterprise Kubernetes platform and service mesh can cover north-south and east-west network connections. However, the demands for application connection are changing as hybrid cloud systems and cloud-native apps expand. To enable abstraction and observation throughout the environment, unified solutions that handle network and application connection constraints concurrently are necessary.

Hybrid Cloud Connectivity

What is a hybrid cloud? A hybrid cloud is one in which applications run in many environments at the same time. Because almost no one nowadays relies solely on the public cloud, hybrid cloud computing options are growing in popularity. The experience of a hybrid cloud goes beyond a single cloud provider/host or a single cluster. You can deploy applications in this world among different cloud providers, clusters, bare-metal hosts, on-premises virtual machines (VM) or SaaS services. Thus, companies may not reap the benefits of multi-cluster and multi-cloud hybrid deployments if they rely on a cluster as a permanent border of the application, tying the application identity to the cluster.

A next-generation connection solution is required to handle hybrid cloud application connectivity demands and embrace the benefits of multi-cluster application deployment designs. How can you provide a seamless connection to applications across many cloud environments and clusters while adjusting current application networking rules and access control, resolving service dependencies and maintaining auditability and quantitative measurements?

This solution must provide a common architecture across clusters to allow developers to abstract where their applications execute and to open up apps for transparent mobility, replication and fail-over across clusters.

A worldwide networking reach is required for such an architecture, as well as the ability for traffic to travel between Kubernetes clusters, inside and across services, data and control planes. Authorization, authentication, rate limitation, traffic management, observability and telemetry should all be addressed smoothly throughout the hybrid cloud environment.

Although each publicly accessible application will require some type of ingress solution, ingress is not a fundamental feature. Each provider's approach may differ in terms of both technology and features. If your operations span many clusters, you must go beyond single cluster ingress and provide a global ingress load-balancing solution capable of routing traffic to those clusters.

Multi-Cloud Connectivity Platform

What is a multi-cloud environment? Multi-cloud is a cloud computing paradigm in which an organization distributes applications and services across several clouds, which can be two or more public, private or a combination of public, private and edge clouds.

What is the distinction between hybrid and multi-cloud computing?

Cloud installations that include more than one cloud are referred to as multi-cloud or hybrid cloud. They differ in terms of the cloud infrastructure that they incorporate. A hybrid cloud infrastructure combines two or more distinct types of clouds, whereas a multi-cloud infrastructure combines many clouds of the same type.

Hybrid Cloud Computing Application

Developers face various hybrid cloud use cases relating to each connectivity area. These include:

● Moving applications across clusters
● Transparent application dependencies
● Load balancing traffic to applications across clusters

While today's technologies offer a solution to the issues raised, a number of hurdles remain which frequently need developers to understand and manage numerous clouds and cluster control and data planes and their settings. Dealing with application deployment and connection in a multi-cloud or multi-cluster environment provides some unique problems for application developers and administrators:

● Individual clusters as the focus of the developer workflow - Because there is no shared abstraction across clusters, multiple clusters, local development or cloud APIs, each cluster or cloud provider requires a one-off solution. There is no common API for multi-cloud connection, thus administrators must configure rules for each cloud provider and cluster independently on distinct control planes and with different APIs.
● Migration between cloud services and clusters - A migration procedure is required when moving an application to a different cluster or cloud service. Because various cloud suppliers utilize distinct APIs and network access configurations, attempting to target a different cloud service may necessitate a unique process or migration phase.
● Global policy management - The ability to establish application-level policies such as authorization, rate restriction, mutual trust and service connection worldwide is required, even if you distribute the applications and dependencies across many environments.

As a result, in a world where multi-cloud deployments are desirable to avoid vendor lock in and boost application resiliency, addressing these problems via a deployment pipeline or a development workflow is not an appropriate approach.

The ongoing challenge of dealing with network-level concerns via Kubernetes ingress and edge gateways while dealing with application and business-level concerns via API gateways or service mesh ingress gateways make it more difficult for administrators to visualize and isolate traffic and access, as well as make it difficult for developers to self-manage application connectivity.

For application developers, seamless or consistent cloud, multi-cluster and single cluster usage is essential. Having a control plane at the next level up to abstract the complexity of working with many clusters across different cloud providers considerably simplifies the entire flow. This control layer can centralize policies and enforce limits that are associated with organizational structure rather than the actual architecture of the deployment platform.

It is significantly preferable to approach clusters as disposable and interchangeable without disrupting developer and admin experiences than to treat each cluster as important and irreplaceable. Rather than recreating the APIs and control plane for clusters, applying the APIs at an intermediate level and propagating to individual clusters allows for the retention of current workflows and APIs while offering transparency in cluster administration.

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