In June of this year, Consul 1.2 was released. The release expanded Consul’s capability around service segmentation (controlling who and how services connect East and West). On this week’s podcast, Wes and Mitchell discuss Consul in detail. The two discuss Consul’s design decisions around focusing on user space networking, layer 4 routing, Go, Windows’ performance characteristics, the roadmap for eBPF on Linux, and an interesting feature that Consul implements called Network Tomography. The show wraps with Mitchell’s discussion on some of the research that Hashicorp is doing around machine learning and security with Consul.
Why listen to this podcast:
- Consul is first and foremost a centralized service registry that provides discovery. While it has a key-value store, it is Consul’s least important feature.
With the June release (1.2), Consul entered more into the space of a service mesh with the focus on service segmentation (controlling how you connect and who can connect).
- Hashicorp attempts to limit the language fragmentation in the Company and has seen a lot of success leveraging Go across their platforms. Therefore, Consul is written in Go.
- Because Consul focused on layer 4 first, it is recommended to leverage the recent integration with Envoy for achieving high degrees of observability.
- All of the network routing with Consul happens in user space at this point; however, kernel space routing with eBPF is planned for the near term. The focus, at this point, is safely cross-compiling to every platform and addressing the most possible use cases. The focuses isn’t on the high performance use cases (yet).
- For any two servers across the globe in different data centers, instantly Consul can give you 99th percentile round-trip time between with uses a feature called Network Tomography.
More on this: Quick scan our curated show notes on InfoQ https://bit.ly/2S3ZiSx
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