Microservices with Java — Part 3

API Gateway and Centralized Logs

This is the third post of my microservices series, where I talk about my impressions of this architecture style using Java with Spring Boot.

The full series of articles are listed below:

The code implemented in each article is available on GitHub in a specific branch, and the final implementation is on the main branch.

In this article we will implement an API Gateway and a Centralized Log solution, again using a practical approach using Java and Spring Boot framework.

The code of this article is available on GitHub in branch ‘ch-03’.

API Gateway

A very common pattern used in microservices is the mplementation of an API Gateway, that is the single entry point for all clients. This become a first layer to access a service, that can be provided by one or more microservices. Some requests are simply routed to the appropriate service, while others need to reach out multiple services.

Some advantages of this API Gateway are:

Of course there are some issues and disadvantages, since the gateway becomes a critical point of failure, and has to be properly deployed and manage.

The intended architecture in the example of this series of articles including the API Gateway will be like this:

Back to code, let’s setup a new project as the API Gateway using Spring Cloud Gateway, since it is the recommended library in newer Spring Boot versions (Zuul became deprecated):

Setup of API Gateway project at Spring Initializr

The complete pom.xml file of this project can be seen here.

Now we have to address the routes at application.yml file. Notice that each mapped route in the gateway is addressed to the respective microservice:

spring:
application:
name: API-GATEWAY
cloud:
gateway:
routes:
- id: PRODUCT-CATALOG-SERVICE
uri: lb://PRODUCT-CATALOG-SERVICE
predicates:
- Path=/api/product/**
- id: USER-INFORMATION-SERVICE
uri: lb://USER-INFORMATION-SERVICE
predicates:
- Path=/api/user/**
- id: SHOPPING-CART-SERVICE
uri: lb://SHOPPING-CART-SERVICE
predicates:
- Path=/api/cart/**

server:
port: 8085

The complete code for this API Gateway implementation is available here.

So, after running all the services, we can make a direct request to the shopping-cart, products-catalog or user-info microservices, or we can call them through the API Gateway (notice the Gateway port 8085), that will redirect to each service requested:

POST request to shopping-cart endpoint through the API Gateway

Centralized Log management

As the number of microservices grows, it can become harder and harder to manage the logs of each one and track down some request/response.

To better tracing the requests, we can use Zipkin server and Spring Cloud Sleuth.

This solution provides the ‘TraceId’, that is the unique identifier of the request, and ‘SpanId’, that represents each service the request reached.

The log will look like this:

[SERVICE-NAME,trace-id,span-id]

As illustrated below:

The generated logs and ids can be sent to Zipkin server, where it is possible to search and monitor each request by many parameters.

First of all, we need a Zipkin server up and running. We can download it this site (I chose to download the ‘jar’ version and run it with java -jar ….):

Zipkin server running

Now we have to add the zipkin and sleuth dependency in every microservice:

<dependency>
<groupId>org.springframework.cloud</groupId>
<artifactId>spring-cloud-starter-sleuth</artifactId>
</dependency>
<dependency>
<groupId>org.springframework.cloud</groupId>
<artifactId>spring-cloud-sleuth-zipkin</artifactId>
</dependency>

And add to the application.yml the base URL of Zipkin server (in all the microservices configs):

spring:
// ... omitted configs ...
zipkin:
base-url: http://127.0.0.1:9411/

And that’s it! It automatically will start to generate logs including the trace and span ids.

After launching all the microservices, and make some request (like POST at shopping-cart endpoint), we can trace the request at Zipkin page using some criteria, like the ‘service-name’ for example:

Zipkin search page

And the result page should look like this:

Zipkin results page

Where you can detail even more the request info:

Resources and further readings:

Software Craftsman

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