In March of 2023, Scott Corrigan, Vice President of Technology Services at meshIQ presented a Tech Talk entitled "Scale your Integration MESH Observability with Kubernetes." This article provides the responses to the questions that participants asked Scott following the presentation.
How is scalability achieved with this solution using Kubernetes?
As part of the micro-services architecture of meshIQ solution, the Control Plane includes a central component that we call a “CEP engine” … (that stands for “Complex Event Processor”). This “CEP engine” manages configuration and performance for multiple Messaging and Event Streaming technologies, across an enterprise network.
That “CEP” engine component is a container. In Kubernetes it’s a “pod” instance.
Depending on the number of end points to be managed, and the size of your environment, you’ll have one or several of these containers at run-time. If your Messaging and Event Streaming environment increases in size and complexity, you add more of these containers to cover the scope.
Is Kubernetes required for running this product?
No. Kubernetes is a deployment option. It is not a requirement. The meshIQ solution can be deployed on Kubernetes, on containers without an orchestration platform, on Virtual Machines, on Cloud Compute Platforms (like Amazon EC2), or on bare-metal servers.
You showed a number of Kafka examples in this presentation. Is this product principally built for Kafka? Also, what distributions of Kafka are covered by this product?
meshIQ is an observability platform … for multiple Messaging, Event Processing & Streaming technologies.
It’s designed as a single pane of glass … for managing and monitoring a complex MESH landscape.
It's designed to address the needs of Administrators, Application Owners & Architects, Developers & Support teams who need to work with one or more Messaging, Event Processing & Streaming technologies.
With regard to Kafka, it covers all distributions, including open-source Apache Kafka, the Confluent platform, Amazon MSK, IBM Event Streams, Red Hat AMQ streams, and others.
Can this product be used to manage messaging and event streaming resources that are deployed outside of a Kubernetes cluster, as well as those that are deployed inside the cluster?
Yes, you can do that. The meshIQ Data Plane can be connected to Messaging and Event Streaming end points deployed within a Kubernetes cluster as well as those outside the cluster.
Of course, there are networking prerequisites for enabling outgoing and incoming traffic to and from services on the Kubernetes cluster. For those considerations, it’s best to consult with your Kubernetes administrator.
You can define connections to end points using the meshIQ web-based user interface and also by using the REST API.
When you define a connection, the details you provide are dependent on the end point (for example, an IP address, a port number, security information such a user id and password, and additional information, if SSL is used).
Does this solution require installation of any software on the managed brokers or queue managers? Are any changes required to the managed resources?
No. meshIQ does not require installation of any software on the managed end points. No changes are required to your messaging servers, queue managers, clusters, or brokers.
The meshIQ Data Plane manages communication with middleware servers using existing communication paths.
For example: for Apache Kafka, the meshIQ Data Plane connects to the bootstrap server of a Kafka cluster and issues management commands and receives replies; for IBM MQ, the meshIQ Data Plane sends remote requests via server-conn channels to connect and issue management commands and to receive replies and events.
How would you compare the meshIQ product to the tooling that is supplied by other software vendors for managing Messaging and Event Streaming technologies?
Actually, there a lot of use cases where meshIQ delivers significant added value in comparison with other tools for management, monitoring or analytics.
meshIQ is a complete solution for Messaging and Event Streaming technologies. It delivers:
Governance. Configuration & message management; Secure self-service with role-based access control; and highly granular, object-level security.
Intelligence. Real-time monitoring with proactive alerting and trend & pattern detection.
Actions. Automated actions triggered based on events.
Introspection. Performance analytics based on time-series data, as well as tracking and tracing of application message flows.
In substance, the meshIQ solution gives you enhanced observability — with a single point of control for multiple middleware. It’s also about saving time, doing things more efficiently, and reducing your workload.
How much time is required to deploy this product and become efficient in using it?
meshIQ takes only minutes to install, whether on Kubernetes, on containers, on VMs, or on bare metal. And it only takes minutes to configure connections to your Messaging and Event Streaming servers.
We have a customer resource center website that provides tutorials and videos that show you how to use the product. And we provide user documentation on that site as well.
We offer Professional services to assist our customers and we provide training. The timeline for a full-scale deployment varies depending on the size of your environment and your objectives. It can be as short as a week or several months. For example, we deployed the solution on a worldwide scale to a major bank with thousands of messaging servers and over 6,000 users in less than 9 months.