What is Envoy?
Originally built at Lyft, Envoy is a high performance C++ distributed proxy designed for single services and applications, as well as a communication bus and “universal data plane” designed for large microservice “service mesh” architectures.
As on the ground microservice practitioners quickly realize, the majority of operational problems that arise when moving to a distributed architecture are ultimately grounded in two areas: networking and observability. It is simply an orders of magnitude larger problem to network and debug a set of intertwined distributed services versus a single monolithic application.
Originally built at Lyft, Envoy is a high performance C++ distributed proxy designed for single services and applications, as well as a communication bus and “universal data plane” designed for large microservice “service mesh” architectures. Built on the learnings of solutions such as Nginx, HAProxy, hardware load balancers, and cloud load balancers, Envoy runs alongside every application and abstracts the network by providing common features in a platform-agnostic manner. When all service traffic in an infrastructure flows via an Envoy mesh, it becomes easy to visualize problem areas via consistent observability, tune overall performance, and add substrate features in a single place.
Out of process architecture
Envoy is a self contained, high performance server with a small memory footprint. It runs alongside any application language or framework.
HTTP/2 and gRPC support
Envoy has first class support for HTTP/2 and gRPC for both incoming and outgoing connections. It is a transparent HTTP/1.1 to HTTP/2 proxy.
Advanced load balancing
Envoy supports advanced load balancing features including automatic retries, circuit breaking, global rate limiting, request shadowing, zone local load balancing, etc.
APIs for configuration management
Envoy provides robust APIs for dynamically managing its configuration.
Deep observability of L7 traffic, native support for distributed tracing, and wire-level observability of MongoDB, DynamoDB, and more.