The Evolution of Istio’s APIs

The Evolution of Istio’s APIs

One of Istio’s main goals has always been, and continues to be, enabling teams to develop abstractions that work best for their specific organization and workloads. Istio provides robust and powerful building blocks for service-to-service networking. Since version 0.1, the Istio team has been learning from production users about how they map their own architectures, workloads, and constraints to Istio’s capabilities, and we’ve been evolving Istio’s APIs to make them work better for you.

The next step in Istio’s evolution is to sharpen our focus and align with the roles of Istio’s users. A security admin should be able to interact with an API that logically groups and simplifies security operations within an Istio mesh; the same goes for service operators and traffic management operations. Taking it a step further, there’s an opportunity to provide improved experiences for beginning, intermediate, and advanced use cases for each role.

There are many common use cases that can be addressed with obvious default settings and a better defined initial experience that requires little to no configuration. For intermediate use cases, the Istio team wants to leverage contextual cues from the environment and provide you with a simpler configuration experience. Finally, for advanced scenarios, our goal is to make easy things easy and hard things possible.

To provide these sorts of role-centric abstractions, however, the APIs underneath them must be able to describe all of Istio’s power and capabilities. Historically, Istio’s approach to API design followed paths similar to those of other infrastructure APIs. Istio follows these design principles: