Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh allows you to control the flow of traffic and API calls between services. Some services in your service mesh may need to communicate within the mesh and others may need to be hidden. Manage the traffic to hide specific backend services, expose services, create testing or versioning deployments, or add a security layer on a set of services.

This guide references the Bookinfo sample application to provide examples of routing in an example application. Install the Bookinfo application to learn how these routing examples work.

Routing tutorial

The Service Mesh Bookinfo sample application consists of four separate microservices, each with multiple versions. After installing the Bookinfo sample application, three different versions of the reviews microservice run concurrently.

When you access the Bookinfo app /product page in a browser and refresh several times, sometimes the book review output contains star ratings and other times it does not. Without an explicit default service version to route to, Service Mesh routes requests to all available versions one after the other.

This tutorial helps you apply rules that route all traffic to v1 (version 1) of the microservices. Later, you can apply a rule to route traffic based on the value of an HTTP request header.

Prerequisites:
  • Deploy the Bookinfo sample application to work with the following examples.

Applying a virtual service

In the following procedure, the virtual service routes all traffic to v1 of each micro-service by applying virtual services that set the default version for the micro-services.

Procedure
  1. Apply the virtual services.

    $ oc apply -f https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Maistra/istio/maistra-2.0/samples/bookinfo/networking/virtual-service-all-v1.yaml
  2. To verify that you applied the virtual services, display the defined routes with the following command:

    $ oc get virtualservices -o yaml

    That command returns a resource of kind: VirtualService in YAML format.

You have configured Service Mesh to route to the v1 version of the Bookinfo microservices including the reviews service version 1.

Testing the new route configuration

Test the new configuration by refreshing the /productpage of the Bookinfo application.

Procedure
  1. Set the value for the GATEWAY_URL parameter. You can use this variable to find the URL for your Bookinfo product page later. In this example, istio-system is the name of the control plane project.

    export GATEWAY_URL=$(oc -n istio-system get route istio-ingressgateway -o jsonpath='{.spec.host}')
  2. Run the following command to retrieve the URL for the product page.

    echo "http://$GATEWAY_URL/productpage"
  3. Open the Bookinfo site in your browser.

The reviews part of the page displays with no rating stars, no matter how many times you refresh. This is because you configured Service Mesh to route all traffic for the reviews service to the version reviews:v1 and this version of the service does not access the star ratings service.

Your service mesh now routes traffic to one version of a service.

Route based on user identity

Change the route configuration so that all traffic from a specific user is routed to a specific service version. In this case, all traffic from a user named jason will be routed to the service reviews:v2.

Service Mesh does not have any special, built-in understanding of user identity. This example is enabled by the fact that the productpage service adds a custom end-user header to all outbound HTTP requests to the reviews service.

Procedure
  1. Run the following command to enable user-based routing in the Bookinfo sample application.

    $ oc apply -f https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Maistra/istio/maistra-2.0/samples/bookinfo/networking/virtual-service-reviews-test-v2.yaml
  2. Run the following command to confirm the rule is created. This command returns all resources of kind: VirtualService in YAML format.

    $ oc get virtualservice reviews -o yaml
  3. On the /productpage of the Bookinfo app, log in as user jason with no password.

    1. Refresh the browser. The star ratings appear next to each review.

  4. Log in as another user (pick any name you wish). Refresh the browser. Now the stars are gone. Traffic is now routed to reviews:v1 for all users except Jason.

You have successfully configured the Bookinfo sample application to route traffic based on user identity.

Routing and managing traffic

Configure your service mesh by adding your own traffic configuration to Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh with a custom resource definitions in a YAML file.

Traffic management with virtual services

You can route requests dynamically to multiple versions of a microservice through Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh with a virtual service. With virtual services, you can:

  • Address multiple application services through a single virtual service. If your mesh uses Kubernetes, for example, you can configure a virtual service to handle all services in a specific namespace. A virtual service enables you to turn a monolithic application into a service comprised of distinct microservices with a seamless consumer experience.

  • Configure traffic rules in combination with gateways to control ingress and egress traffic.

Configuring virtual services

Requests are routed to services within a service mesh with virtual services. Each virtual service consists of a set of routing rules that are evaluated in order. Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh matches each given request to the virtual service to a specific real destination within the mesh.

Without virtual services, Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh distributes traffic using round-robin load balancing between all service instances. With a virtual service, you can specify traffic behavior for one or more hostnames. Routing rules in the virtual service tell Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh how to send the traffic for the virtual service to appropriate destinations. Route destinations can be versions of the same service or entirely different services.

Procedure
  1. Create a YAML file using the following example to route requests to different versions of a the Bookinfo sample application service depending on which user connects to the application.

    Example VirtualService.yaml
    apiVersion: networking.istio.io/v1alpha3
    kind: VirtualService
    metadata:
      name: reviews
    spec:
      hosts:
      - reviews
      http:
      - match:
        - headers:
            end-user:
              exact: jason
        route:
        - destination:
            host: reviews
            subset: v2
      - route:
        - destination:
            host: reviews
            subset: v3
  2. Run the following command to apply VirtualService.yaml, where VirtualService.yaml is the path to the file.

    $ oc apply -f VirtualService.yaml

Configuring your virtual host

The following sections describe each field in the YAML file and explain how you can create a virtual host in a virtual service.

Hosts

The hosts field lists the virtual service’s destination address to which the routing rules apply. This is the address(es) that are used to send requests to the service.

The virtual service hostname can be an IP address, a DNS name, or a short name that resolves to a fully qualified domain name.

spec:
  hosts:
  - reviews

Routing rules

The http section contains the virtual service’s routing rules which describe match conditions and actions for routing HTTP/1.1, HTTP2, and gRPC traffic sent to the destination as specified in the hosts field. A routing rule consists of the destination where you want the traffic to go and any specified match conditions.

Match condition

The first routing rule in the example has a condition that begins with the match field. In this example, this routing applies to all requests from the user jason. Add the headers, end-user, and exact fields to select the appropriate requests.

spec:
  hosts:
  - reviews
  http:
  - match:
    - headers:
      end-user:
        exact: jason
Destination

The destination field in the route section specifies the actual destination for traffic that matches this condition. Unlike the virtual service’s host, the destination’s host must be a real destination that exists in the Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh service registry. This can be a mesh service with proxies or a non-mesh service added using a service entry. In this example, the host name is a Kubernetes service name:

spec:
  hosts:
  - reviews
  http:
  - match:
    - headers:
      end-user:
        exact: jason
    route:
    - destination:
      host: reviews
      subset: v2

Destination rules

Destination rules are applied after virtual service routing rules are evaluated, so they apply to the traffic’s real destination. Virtual services route traffic to a destination. Destination rules configure what happens to traffic at that destination.

Load balancing options

By default, Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh uses a round-robin load balancing policy, where each service instance in the pool gets a request in turn. Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh also supports the following models, which you can specify in destination rules for requests to a particular service or service subset.

  • Random: Requests are forwarded at random to instances in the pool.

  • Weighted: Requests are forwarded to instances in the pool according to a specific percentage.

  • Least requests: Requests are forwarded to instances with the least number of requests.

Destination rule example

The following example destination rule configures three different subsets for the my-svc destination service, with different load balancing policies:

apiVersion: networking.istio.io/v1alpha3
kind: DestinationRule
metadata:
  name: my-destination-rule
spec:
  host: my-svc
  trafficPolicy:
    loadBalancer:
      simple: RANDOM
  subsets:
  - name: v1
    labels:
      version: v1
  - name: v2
    labels:
      version: v2
    trafficPolicy:
      loadBalancer:
        simple: ROUND_ROBIN
  - name: v3
    labels:
      version: v3

Gateways

You can use a gateway to manage inbound and outbound traffic for your mesh to specify which traffic you want to enter or leave the mesh. Gateway configurations are applied to standalone Envoy proxies that are running at the edge of the mesh, rather than sidecar Envoy proxies running alongside your service workloads.

Unlike other mechanisms for controlling traffic entering your systems, such as the Kubernetes Ingress APIs, Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh gateways allow you use the full power and flexibility of traffic routing. The Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh gateway resource can layer 4-6 load balancing properties such as ports to expose and configure Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh TLS settings. Instead of adding application-layer traffic routing (L7) to the same API resource, you can bind a regular Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh virtual service to the gateway and manage gateway traffic like any other data plane traffic in a service mesh.

Gateways are primarily used to manage ingress traffic, but you can also configure egress gateways. An egress gateway enables you to configure a dedicated exit node for the traffic leaving the mesh. This enables you to limit which services have access to external networks, which adds security control to your service mesh. You can also use a gateway to configure a purely internal proxy.

Gateway example

The following example shows a sample gateway configuration for external HTTPS ingress traffic:

apiVersion: networking.istio.io/v1alpha3
kind: Gateway
metadata:
  name: ext-host-gwy
spec:
  selector:
    istio: ingressgateway # use istio default controller
  servers:
  - port:
    number: 443
    name: https
    protocol: HTTPS
    hosts:
    - ext-host.example.com
    tls:
      mode: SIMPLE
      serverCertificate: /tmp/tls.crt
      privateKey: /tmp/tls.key

This gateway configuration lets HTTPS traffic from ext-host.example.com into the mesh on port 443, but doesn’t specify any routing for the traffic.

To specify routing and for the gateway to work as intended, you must also bind the gateway to a virtual service. You do this using the virtual service’s gateways field, as shown in the following example:

apiVersion: networking.istio.io/v1alpha3
kind: VirtualService
metadata:
  name: virtual-svc
spec:
  hosts:
  - ext-host.example.com
  gateways:
    - ext-host-gwy

You can then configure the virtual service with routing rules for the external traffic.

Service entries

A service entry adds an entry to the service registry that Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh maintains internally. After you add the service entry, the Envoy proxies send traffic to the service as if it is a service in your mesh. Service entries allow you to do the following:

  • Manage traffic for services that run outside of the service mesh.

  • Redirect and forward traffic for external destinations (such as, APIs consumed from the web) or traffic to services in legacy infrastructure.

  • Define retry, timeout, and fault injection policies for external destinations.

  • Run a mesh service in a Virtual Machine (VM) by adding VMs to your mesh.

Add services from a different cluster to the mesh to configure a multicluster Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh mesh on Kubernetes.

Service entry examples

The following example mesh-external service entry adds the ext-resource external dependency to the Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh service registry:

apiVersion: networking.istio.io/v1alpha3
kind: ServiceEntry
metadata:
  name: svc-entry
spec:
  hosts:
  - ext-svc.example.com
  ports:
  - number: 443
    name: https
    protocol: HTTPS
  location: MESH_EXTERNAL
  resolution: DNS

Specify the external resource using the hosts field. You can qualify it fully or use a wildcard prefixed domain name.

You can configure virtual services and destination rules to control traffic to a service entry in the same way you configure traffic for any other service in the mesh. For example, the following destination rule configures the traffic route to use mutual TLS to secure the connection to the ext-svc.example.com external service that is configured using the service entry:

apiVersion: networking.istio.io/v1alpha3
kind: DestinationRule
metadata:
  name: ext-res-dr
spec:
  host: ext-svc.example.com
  trafficPolicy:
    tls:
      mode: MUTUAL
      clientCertificate: /etc/certs/myclientcert.pem
      privateKey: /etc/certs/client_private_key.pem
      caCertificates: /etc/certs/rootcacerts.pem

Managing ingress traffic

In Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh, the Ingress Gateway enables features such as monitoring, security, and route rules to apply to traffic that enters the cluster. Use a Service Mesh gateway to expose a service outside of the service mesh.

Determining the ingress IP and ports

Ingress configuration differs depending on if your environment supports an external load balancer. An external load balancer is set in the ingress IP and ports for the cluster. To determine if your cluster’s IP and ports are configured for external load balancers, run the following command. In this example, istio-system is the name of the control plane project.

$ oc get svc istio-ingressgateway -n istio-system

That command returns the NAME, TYPE, CLUSTER-IP, EXTERNAL-IP, PORT(S), and AGE of each item in your namespace.

If the EXTERNAL-IP value is set, your environment has an external load balancer that you can use for the ingress gateway.

If the EXTERNAL-IP value is <none>, or perpetually <pending>, your environment does not provide an external load balancer for the ingress gateway. You can access the gateway using the service’s node port.

Determine the ingress according to your environment. For an environment with load balancer support, Determining ingress ports with a load balancer. For an environment without load balancer support, Determining ingress ports without a load balancer. After you have determined the ingress ports, see Configuring ingress using a gateway to complete your configuration.

Determining ingress ports with a load balancer

Follow these instructions if your environment has an external load balancer.

Procedure
  1. Run the following command to set the ingress IP and ports. This command sets a variable in your terminal.

    $ export INGRESS_HOST=$(oc -n istio-system get service istio-ingressgateway -o jsonpath='{.status.loadBalancer.ingress[0].ip}')
  2. Run the following command to set the ingress port.

    $ export INGRESS_PORT=$(oc -n istio-system get service istio-ingressgateway -o jsonpath='{.spec.ports[?(@.name=="http2")].port}')
  3. Run the following command to set the secure ingress port.

    $ export SECURE_INGRESS_PORT=$(oc -n istio-system get service istio-ingressgateway -o jsonpath='{.spec.ports[?(@.name=="https")].port}')
  4. Run the following command to set the TCP ingress port.

    $ export TCP_INGRESS_PORT=$(kubectl -n istio-system get service istio-ingressgateway -o jsonpath='{.spec.ports[?(@.name=="tcp")].port}')

In some environments, the load balancer may be exposed using a host name instead of an IP address. For that case, the ingress gateway’s EXTERNAL-IP value is not an IP address. Instead, it’s a host name, and the previous command fails to set the INGRESS_HOST environment variable.

In that case, use the following command to correct the INGRESS_HOST value:

$ export INGRESS_HOST=$(oc -n istio-system get service istio-ingressgateway -o jsonpath='{.status.loadBalancer.ingress[0].hostname}')

Determining ingress ports without a load balancer

If your environment does not have an external load balancer, determine the ingress ports and use a node port instead.

Procedure
  1. Set the ingress ports.

    $ export INGRESS_PORT=$(oc -n istio-system get service istio-ingressgateway -o jsonpath='{.spec.ports[?(@.name=="http2")].nodePort}')
  2. Run the following command to set the secure ingress port.

    $ export SECURE_INGRESS_PORT=$(oc -n istio-system get service istio-ingressgateway -o jsonpath='{.spec.ports[?(@.name=="https")].nodePort}')
  3. Run the following command to set the TCP ingress port.

    $ export TCP_INGRESS_PORT=$(kubectl -n istio-system get service istio-ingressgateway -o jsonpath='{.spec.ports[?(@.name=="tcp")].nodePort}')

Configuring ingress using a gateway

An ingress gateway is a load balancer operating at the edge of the mesh that receives incoming HTTP/TCP connections. It configures exposed ports and protocols but does not include any traffic routing configuration. Traffic routing for ingress traffic is instead configured with routing rules, the same way as for internal service requests.

The following steps show how to create a gateway and configure a VirtualService to expose a service in the Bookinfo sample application to outside traffic for paths /productpage and /login.

Procedure
  1. Create a gateway to accept traffic.

    1. Create a YAML file, and copy the following YAML into it.

      Gateway example gateway.yaml
      apiVersion: networking.istio.io/v1alpha3
      kind: Gateway
      metadata:
        name: bookinfo-gateway
      spec:
        selector:
          istio: ingressgateway
        servers:
        - port:
            number: 80
            name: http
            protocol: HTTP
          hosts:
          - "*"
    2. Apply the YAML file.

      $ oc apply -f gateway.yaml
  2. Create a VirtualService object to rewrite the host header.

    1. Create a YAML file, and copy the following YAML into it.

      Virtual service example vs.yaml
      apiVersion: networking.istio.io/v1alpha3
      kind: VirtualService
      metadata:
        name: bookinfo
      spec:
        hosts:
        - "*"
        gateways:
        - bookinfo-gateway
        http:
        - match:
          - uri:
              exact: /productpage
          - uri:
              prefix: /static
          - uri:
              exact: /login
          - uri:
              exact: /logout
          - uri:
              prefix: /api/v1/products
          route:
          - destination:
              host: productpage
              port:
                number: 9080
    2. Apply the YAML file.

      $ oc apply -f vs.yaml
  3. Test that the gateway and VirtualService have been set correctly.

    1. Set the Gateway URL.

      export GATEWAY_URL=$(oc -n istio-system get route istio-ingressgateway -o jsonpath='{.spec.host}')
    2. Set the port number. In this example, istio-system is the name of the control plane project.

      export TARGET_PORT=$(oc -n istio-system get route istio-ingressgateway -o jsonpath='{.spec.port.targetPort}')
    3. Test a page that has been explicitly exposed.

      curl -s -I "$GATEWAY_URL/productpage"

      The expected result is 200.

Automatic routes

OpenShift routes for Istio Gateways are automatically managed in Service Mesh. Every time an Istio Gateway is created, updated or deleted inside the service mesh, an OpenShift route is created, updated or deleted.

Subdomains

Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh creates the route with the subdomain, but OpenShift Container Platform must be configured to enable it. Subdomains, for example *.domain.com, are supported but not by default. Configure an OpenShift Container Platform wildcard policy before configuring a wildcard host Gateway. For more information, see Using wildcard routes.

Creating subdomain routes

The following example creates a gateway in the Bookinfo sample application, which creates subdomain routes.

apiVersion: networking.istio.io/v1alpha3
kind: Gateway
metadata:
  name: gateway1
spec:
  selector:
    istio: ingressgateway
  servers:
  - port:
      number: 80
      name: http
      protocol: HTTP
    hosts:
    - www.bookinfo.com
    - bookinfo.example.com

Then, the following OpenShift Routes are created automatically. You can check that the routes are created with the following command. In this example, istio-system is the name of the control plane project.

$ oc -n istio-system get routes
Expected output
NAME           HOST/PORT             PATH  SERVICES               PORT  TERMINATION   WILDCARD
gateway1-lvlfn bookinfo.example.com        istio-ingressgateway   <all>               None
gateway1-scqhv www.bookinfo.com            istio-ingressgateway   <all>               None

If the gateway is deleted, Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh deletes the routes. However, routes created manually are never modified by Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh.

Annotations

Sometimes specific annotations are needed in an OpenShift Route. For example, some advanced features in OpenShift Routes are managed via special annotations. For this and other use cases, Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh will copy all annotations present in the Istio Gateway resource (with the exception of those starting with kubectl.kubernetes.io) into the managed OpenShift Route resource.

If you need specific annotations in the OpenShift Routes created by Service Mesh, create them in the Istio Gateway resource and they will be copied into the OpenShift Route resources managed by the Service Mesh.

Disabling automatic route creation

By default, the ServiceMeshControlPlane resource automatically synchronizes the Gateway resources with OpenShift routes. Disabling the automatic route creation allows you more flexibility to control routes if you have a special case or prefer to control routes manually.

Disable integration between Istio Gateways and OpenShift Routes by setting the ServiceMeshControlPlane field gateways.openshiftRoute.enabled to false. For example, see the following resource snippet.

spec:
  gateways:
    openshiftRoute:
      enabled: false

Sidecar

By default, Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh configures every Envoy proxy to accept traffic on all the ports of its associated workload, and to reach every workload in the mesh when forwarding traffic. You can use a sidecar configuration to do the following:

  • Fine-tune the set of ports and protocols that an Envoy proxy accepts.

  • Limit the set of services that the Envoy proxy can reach.

To optimize performance of your service mesh, consider limiting Envoy proxy configurations.

In the Bookinfo sample application, configure a Sidecar so all services can reach other services running in the same namespace and control plane. This Sidecar configuration is required for using Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh policy and telemetry features.

Procedure
  1. Create a YAML file using the following example to specify that you want a sidecar configuration to apply to all workloads in a particular namespace. Otherwise, choose specific workloads using a workloadSelector.

    Example sidecar.yaml
    apiVersion: networking.istio.io/v1alpha3
    kind: Sidecar
    metadata:
      name: default
      namespace: bookinfo
    spec:
      egress:
      - hosts:
        - "./*"
        - "istio-system/*"
  2. Run the following command to apply sidecar.yaml, where sidecar.yaml is the path to the file.

    $ oc apply -f sidecar.yaml
  3. Run the following command to verify that the sidecar was created successfully.

    $ oc get sidecar