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HashiCorp Expands Multi-Cloud Service Networking Capabilities With Full-Featured Service Mesh in Major Consul Update

833 Days ago

New Layer 7 Networking Functionality Introduces Secure Service Connectivity, Enabling a Common Operating Model Across Any Cloud

AMSTERDAM, The Netherlands and SAN FRANCISCO, July 09, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today onstage at HashiConf EU, HashiCorp, a leader in multi-cloud automation software, announced major enhancements to HashiCorp Consul, including Layer 7 traffic management, multi-platform and multi-cloud service networking capabilities, and expanded integration with the HashiCorp Nomad scheduler. With its full-featured service mesh, Consul now provides advanced traffic management and observability functions at the application layer, and enables end-to-end secure communication across multiple clusters, platforms, data centers, or clouds. The additions extend HashiCorp Consul’s position as the most widely adopted multi-cloud service networking solution.

Consul is able to network the widely diverse and increasingly dynamic environments in today’s enterprises – from various public cloud infrastructures, Kubernetes, as well as the more static, non-containerized legacy environments -- all using a common cloud operating model. Consul provides a central service registry to enable visibility into all running services, and drives network middleware automation with its service discovery capabilities. For sophisticated environments using microservices, Consul provides a distributed service mesh to securely connect dynamic services across any runtime platform and any public or private cloud.

“Networking becomes more dynamic and complex with the move to microservices and multi-cloud environments. It is very challenging for network operations and security teams to keep up with the updates to network middleware and manage the increasingly complex network topologies,” said Armon Dadgar, CTO and co-founder of HashiCorp. “We designed HashiCorp Consul to enable service networking across these varied environments by pushing routing, authorization, and other core networking functionality from centralized middleware to the endpoints. This means that the network topology can be dramatically simplified by removing middleware from the network path.”

With today’s announcement, the upcoming release of the Consul 1.6 will add these new service mesh capabilities:

  • Layer 7 traffic management - Consul will provide dynamic routing at the application layer of the network to support different deployment strategies and improved resiliency.
  • Mesh gateway - Consul will provide simplified and secure cross-cluster communication without the need to configure a VPN nor create complex routing rules, enabling the scale needed for multi-platform and multi-cloud environments.

In addition, HashiCorp previously announced these service mesh capabilities in Consul:

  • Service discovery - Consul provides a central registry to dynamically locate services across multiple runtime platforms and clouds.
  • Service segmentation - Consul provides a zero-trust network enabled by identity-based security policies.
  • Layer 7 observability - Consul provides insights into application behavior and performance through networking metric collection, distributed tracking, and logging.

Last year, HashiCorp enabled consistent security enforced across multiple data centers by releasing intention and certificate replication as part of Consul Enterprise. HashiCorp’s work with customers over the past year has shown that the challenge that a mesh gateway aims to solve is a challenge that most users face, not just those that are part of large enterprises. With today’s announcement, HashiCorp is open sourcing that functionality as a building block for mesh gateway capabilities.

What sets Consul apart from other service mesh offerings is that regardless of where or on what platform a workload is running, Consul allows users to link together all of their applications in a single dedicated network layer. Consul is multi-region capable, giving the ability to link on-premises data centers, clouds, and hybrid environments.

Consul simplifies microservice networking and serves as a first-class networking solution for Kubernetes environments, as well as for other runtime platforms and legacy workloads. It also makes it easy to bridge services across multiple Kubernetes clusters or expand the service mesh across multiple runtime platforms, data centers, or clouds.

“Cloud applications often create independent network silos, and connectivity between these network environments has been challenging,” said Dadgar. “We want to ‘flatten’ the network further and to easily bridge services across multiple network silos without the need for complex network configuration or VPN technologies. Consul can ensure end-to-end security is automatically enforced regardless of how service traffic traverses your network.”

New Consul Connect Integration with HashiCorp Nomad
Consul Connect is an attractive feature for users who need to run secure microservices. For those who use HashiCorp Nomad to deploy and manage their applications, Nomad previously provided tight integration with Consul for service registration and dynamic configuration. With the next release, Nomad users will be able to leverage new Consul Connect integration features for service segmentation via secure service-to-service communication.

Ecosystem Support: Consul Support for Microsoft SMI efforts and AWS App Mesh
HashiCorp has been working closely with key cloud partners to expand the environments and integrations to match the realities of organizations today that work with microservices, multiple applications platforms, and multiple cloud environments.

At KubeCon EU in Barcelona in May 2019, Microsoft introduced a new specification, the Service Mesh Interface (SMI), for implementing service mesh providers into Kubernetes environments. At launch, HashiCorp Consul offered support for the Traffic Access Control specification, with possible integrations for the others in the future.

In November 2018, AWS announced general availability of their new service discovery tool, AWS Cloud Map, and in March announced availability of AWS App Mesh. HashiCorp, an Advanced tier member of the AWS Partner Network, worked closely with AWS engineers and offered launch-day support of AWS Cloud Map via Consul and supports service discovery between App Mesh and Consul through the integration with Cloud Map.

HashiCorp Consul 1.6 is currently available in beta, with general availability planned for later this summer. For more details on Consul 1.6, read the announcement blog. For more information about HashiCorp Consul, please visit: http://www.consul.io.

More Resources
More information about Consul, multi-cloud service networking, and service mesh are available in the HashiCorp Resource Library, including:

About HashiCorp
HashiCorp is the leader in multi-cloud infrastructure automation software. The HashiCorp software suite enables organizations to adopt consistent workflows to provision, secure, connect, and run any infrastructure for any application. HashiCorp open source tools Vagrant, Packer, Terraform, Vault, Consul, and Nomad are downloaded tens of millions of times each year and are broadly adopted by the Global 2000. Enterprise versions of these products enhance the open source tools with features that promote collaboration, operations, governance, and multi-data center functionality. The company is headquartered in San Francisco and backed by Mayfield, GGV Capital, Redpoint Ventures, True Ventures, IVP, and Bessemer Venture Partners. For more information, visit https://www.hashicorp.com or follow HashiCorp on Twitter @HashiCorp.

Media and Analyst Contact:
Amber Rowland

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