Research on Interprocess Communication in Microservices Architecture

University essay from KTH/Skolan för elektroteknik och datavetenskap (EECS)

Abstract: With the substantial growth of cloud computing over the past decade, microservices has gained significant popularity in the industry as a new architectural pattern. It promises a cloud-native architecture that breaks large applications into a collection of small, independent, and distributed packages. Since microservices-based applications are distributed, one of the key challenges when designing an application is the choice of mechanism by which services communicate with each other. There are several approaches for implementing Interprocess communication (IPC) in microservices, and each comes with different advantages and trade-offs. While theoretical and informal comparison exists between them, this thesis has taken an experimental approach to compare and contrast common forms of IPC communications. In this the- sis, IPC methods have been categorized into Synchronous and Asynchronous categories. The Synchronous type consists of REST API and Google gRPC, while the Asynchronous type is using a message broker known as RabbitMQ. Further, a collection of microservices for an e-commerce scenario has been designed and developed using all the three IPC methods. A load test has been executed against each model to obtain quantitative data related to Performance Efficiency, and Availability of every method. Developing the same set of functionalities using different IPC methods has offered a qualitative data related to Scalability, and Complexity of each IPC model. The evaluation of the experiment indicates that, although there is no universal IPC solution that can be applied in all cases, Asynchronous IPC patterns shall be the preferred option when designing the system. Nevertheless, the findings of this work also suggest there exist scenarios where Synchronous patterns can be more suitable.

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