Light bulb: Microservice-based architecture

‘Microservices’ and ‘Microservice-based architecture’ are concepts that are experiencing a rapid increase in popularity throughout the developer community and it’s ability to deliver simplicity in an increasingly complex web of applications, systems and databases is evident. But despite the popularity of microservice-based architecture, you may wonder what makes it so special. What are microservices and why should you join the trend? Here are five ways microservices can bring costs down and make application management more efficient.

Generate a full-featured,documented, and secure REST API in minutes.

Sign up for our free 14 day hosted trial to learn how.

Generate your No Code REST API now

Microservice-based Architecture

Many businesses operate based on a monolithic architecture, meaning that you can manage, scale, and develop all or almost all services and applications simultaneously. A single developer team is responsible for the majority of your applications as well. Some cons of this include the following:

  • Difficult, expensive, and cost-inefficient scaling. Scaling a monolithic architecture means that you do not have the option of scaling individual services to fit your current needs.
  • Complex and time-consuming repairs. Repairing tightly coupled architecture requires first discovering the root of the problem. Where one team has to deal with a complex system, chances are that repairs will involve excessive downtime and difficulty.
  • Lack of expertise. The more complex your system, the more difficult it can be to get a developer team together that can communicate well and produce the best results.

By contrast, microservices divide your processes up among various applications that you manage independently but connect through APIs. This is where API-as-a-service systems like DreamFactory become extremely useful. Decoupled architecture is a major feature of microservices. Decoupled refers to the fact that components can be scaled and deployed individually. Your teams can develop and manage various components on a case-by-case basis. The best-known example of microservice-based architecture is likely Amazon.

Because different teams may be responsible for different services and applications, they can spend more time developing their niche projects or problem-solving without heavily affecting other components.

What are some other reasons you should look at microservices as a viable architectural framework?

1. Easier Testing and Experimentation

Microservices enable companies to test different strategies for different services. Developers can make changes to code and structure in one service without affecting other services. This is ideal for A/B testing or security testing. 

Additionally, independent microservices mean that you can have independent KPIs (key performance indicators). Companies and developers can study the performance of individual services, not just of the complete system. They can easily discover positive or negative results from experimentation.

Testing and experimentation will also be less time-consuming and require less downtime than with a monolithic architecture, especially if you have the benefit of a secure Integration-as-a-Service platform like DreamFactory. DreamFactory enables users to easily create and manage APIs with little or no coding experience.

2. More Efficient Upgrades and Repairs

The nature of microservices requires smaller blocks of code that are functionally independent from others. This means that you can isolate individual services for upgrades or repair without the excessive downtime and time-consuming operations normally required for a monolithic architecture.

You have probably had the unfortunate experience of an entire website or system being down for ‘scheduled maintenance.’ Companies often have to plan for this some time in advance and warn customers ahead of time to minimize the inconvenience to their schedules.

With microservices, you can often avoid such an event entirely, instead opting to perform maintenance on individual services without reducing overall performance.

3. Modularization

One of the major inconveniences of legacy systems is the lack of modularization, which also happens to be the heart of microservices. Simply put, modularization is dividing up code into manageable, independent segments. Ideally, these segments or modules are reusable and essentially interchangeable across a wide variety of services.

This reusable code reduces time-consuming development and minimizes errors. Of course, effective modularization requires excellent communication between services through a standardized API. This is the role of a platform like DreamFactory, which facilitates low-code REST (Representational State Transfer) API development.

4. Simplified Deployment

Microservice deployment does not require the same vast infrastructure and careful timing and consideration as for a monolithic system. With simpler code, developers can easily deploy individual services or roll them back as necessary depending on their success or failure.

Deployment for microservices also involves connecting them through an API to become a useful and complete system. These APIs keep backend code secure and inaccessible to unwanted users, and an Integration-as-a-Service platform like DreamFactory can simplify many of the development processes involved.

5. Secure Outsourcing

Allowing large numbers of people to access the inner workings of a single service increases the risk of security leaks, especially when you have to outsource the management of certain functions. It is difficult to maintain strict compliance as well.

Using microservices means that your company can identify or avoid potential security risks altogether. Potential risks are easier to isolate on a smaller scale. This also means you are not directly responsible for security in some services, so it is essential that those to whom you outsource work focus on compliance and keeping data secure.

Generate a full-featured,documented, and secure REST API in minutes.

Sign up for our free 14 day hosted trial to learn how.

Generate your No Code REST API now

Implementing Microservices

In summary, microservices can save you time and money and keep your projects on schedule. How can you best implement microservices in your business architecture?

DreamFactory allows you to connect microservices via secure, fully customizable REST APIs. You can save time and effort in the development stage with no-code API management, greatly reducing your TTM (Time to Market) and costs. Understanding microservices and their benefits is the first step to having a more agile and cutting-edge business. Learn more with a 14-day trial of DreamFactory today.