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Building and deploying microservice applications

How, when, and why to migrate from a monolithic to a microservice architecture

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Tackle the challenges

While a hot, modern trend, there are technical and cultural challenges on the road to adopting a microservice architecture. Generally, the most significant roadblock is the overall complexity inherent in a distributed system. The following are some challenges that teams encounter when migrating to a microservice architecture:

  • Complex communication between services: While all requests between each service need to be handled carefully, developers may need to write extra code to avoid disruptions. Eventually, complications could arise when remote calls encounter latency.

  • More services = more resources: Interacting with multiple databases and transaction management systems can be incredibly difficult.

  • Cumbersome global testing: Exhaustive system testing of a microservices-based application can be burdensome if there has not been enough preparation.

  • Tedious debugging workload: Each service produces a set of log files, and these logs can be extensive.

  • Strained deployment: Extensive, simultaneous updates to many services stress the limit of the deployment model.

  • Additional infrastructure costs: Unlike a monolith, there are added costs for new service provisioning, creation of the build pipeline, hardware provisioning, logging and monitoring infrastructure, and automation to handle the intricacies of managing microservice deployments.

With good planning, patience for configuration adjustments, and the appropriate level of automation, many of these challenges can be addressed squarely by a team of skilled tech professionals.

Microservice architectures generally are ideally suited for large companies. For example, if a small company needs to iterate through a prototyping effort quickly, it can be too complicated or much slower to implement a microservice architecture.

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