“Lightweight” Istio, Microsoft opensources an Envoy-based service grid.

Microsoft has announced a new open source project, Open Services Mesh, OSM. It is a lightweight and scalable service grid running on Kubernetes;

According to Michelle Noorali, Microsoft’s software engineer, OSM enables users to manage, protect, and observe service-to-service communications in a highly dynamic microservices environment. It also said it hoped the project would become a community-led project with an open governance mechanism. The company plans to implement an open governance model and has submitted a proposal to donate the project to the Cloud Native Computing Foundation, CNCF.

We want OSM to be a community-led project that will facilitate collaboration on SMI’s new and existing APIs. We want oSM to have an open governance mechanism and want to work with the community in a place where we can easily collaborate, so we’ve submitted a proposal to start the process of donating OSM to the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF).

We want OSM to make it easy for Kubernetes operators to install, maintain and operate. At the same time, we are determined to make OSM easy to understand and contribute to the entire community.

The project has a control plane that is compatible with the service grid interface specification, envoy for the data plane, and a flexible design, so it can be used in simple or complex scenes. In addition, OSM is designed to simplify tasks such as configuring traffic transfer, protecting inter-service communication, fine-grained access control policies, metrics for debugging and monitoring, integration with certificate management solutions, and built-in applications.

In fact, there are many other service grid technologies on the market today, including Istio, Kuma, and Linkerd. Currently, Linkerd is managed by CNCF, and Kuma is also donated to CNCF as a Sandbox project. For Its part, Google announced last month the creation of open-use sharing organization Open Usage Commons, which has transferred its trademark ownership of Istio to the organization despite its commitments with CNCF.

Istio is known to have complex deployment and management, and the difference between OSM and Istio is that, in addition to being donated to CNCF, it is easier to use than Istio. Gabe Monroy, product director of Microsoft’s Azure Application Platform and a member of the CNCF Board of Directors, said in an interview that The Open Service Mesh was designed as a lightweight version of Istio.

“What our customers are telling us is that today’s solutions are very complex, and Istio is a good example. That’s not what I said alone. We’re in the AKS support queue and we’re trying to use it — they’re struggling right here. This is a technology that is difficult to use, and difficult to build on a large scale. So there are some unsatisfactory solutions outside, and we really feel that something that is lighter and more SMI-focused is the best choice for customers who are involved in this technology today. “

In addition, as for the much-watched entanglement between Istio and CNCF, Monroy commented, “It’s interesting that a lot of people are very focused on governance.” But I think when people pay too much attention to this issue, you ignore the customer’s use of the technology. The truth is, it’s not a good time for customers to use Istio these days. I think even those who go deep into the community will acknowledge that, and that’s the real reason we’re not interested in contributing to this ecosystem right now. “