How to choose the right API Gateway

This page summarizes the projects mentioned and recommended in the original post on dev.to

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  • Apache ZooKeeper

    Apache ZooKeeper

    Next, review deployment complexity such as DB-less versus database-backed deployments. For example, Kong does require running Cassandra or Postgres. Apigee requires Cassandra, Zookeeper, and Postgres to run, while other solutions like Express Gateway and Tyk only require Redis. Apache APISIX uses etcd as its data store, it stores and manages routing-related and plugin-related configurations in etcd in the Data Plane.

  • Vagrant

    Vagrant is a tool for building and distributing development environments.

    Another point to consider is how difficult is it to install the API Gateway or redeploy the gateway when changes are made. Check what installation options are offered. Most modern API Gateways can be installed in many different ways(Package based, Docker, Helm, RPM) in any environment (Linux, Windows, macOS). For example, one of the biggest advantages of Kong is its wide range of installation choices, with pre-made containers such as Docker and Vagrant so you can get a deployment running quickly.

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  • CPython

    The Python programming language

    Kong offers an open-sourced Plugin Developer Kit (or “PDK”) in various languages. You can build a Kong plugin with Go, Javascript, Python, and Lua. In Apache APISIX, you can use different Plugin Runners to develop plugins using the programming languages you are familiar with. They also embedded Wasm into APISIX, and you can utilize Wasm to compile Wasm bytecode to run in APISIX.

  • PostgreSQL

    Mirror of the official PostgreSQL GIT repository. Note that this is just a *mirror* - we don't work with pull requests on github. To contribute, please see https://wiki.postgresql.org/wiki/Submitting_a_Patch

    Next, review deployment complexity such as DB-less versus database-backed deployments. For example, Kong does require running Cassandra or Postgres. Apigee requires Cassandra, Zookeeper, and Postgres to run, while other solutions like Express Gateway and Tyk only require Redis. Apache APISIX uses etcd as its data store, it stores and manages routing-related and plugin-related configurations in etcd in the Data Plane.

  • Lua

    Lua is a powerful, efficient, lightweight, embeddable scripting language. It supports procedural programming, object-oriented programming, functional programming, data-driven programming, and data description.

    Kong offers an open-sourced Plugin Developer Kit (or “PDK”) in various languages. You can build a Kong plugin with Go, Javascript, Python, and Lua. In Apache APISIX, you can use different Plugin Runners to develop plugins using the programming languages you are familiar with. They also embedded Wasm into APISIX, and you can utilize Wasm to compile Wasm bytecode to run in APISIX.

  • krakend-ce

    High-performance, statless, declarative, API Gateway written in Go.

    Check what configuration language (JSON/Yaml) and style (Declarative/Imperative) chosen API Gateway support. It is not so crucial but sometimes you might ask: Does it have a user-friendly GUI and drag&drop easy config option? Some open-source projects like Tyk, Krakend.io, and Apache APISIX have built-in no-code possibly visual editing dashboards. You can even import all your APIs descriptions from a JSON.

  • express-gateway

    A microservices API Gateway built on top of Express.js

    Next, review deployment complexity such as DB-less versus database-backed deployments. For example, Kong does require running Cassandra or Postgres. Apigee requires Cassandra, Zookeeper, and Postgres to run, while other solutions like Express Gateway and Tyk only require Redis. Apache APISIX uses etcd as its data store, it stores and manages routing-related and plugin-related configurations in etcd in the Data Plane.

  • InfluxDB

    Build time-series-based applications quickly and at scale.. InfluxDB is the Time Series Platform where developers build real-time applications for analytics, IoT and cloud-native services. Easy to start, it is available in the cloud or on-premises.

  • elasticsearch-mapper-attachments

    Mapper Attachments Type plugin for Elasticsearch

    Next characteristic of a good API Gateway is effortless integration with more ecosystems. You need to check if it is integrated with other products, tools, platforms, and services. For example, you can investigate if supports several application protocols, and compatibility with third-party identity providers for authentication, and if it provides pre-built connectors that you can easily integrate with Most observability platforms like (Prometheus, Skywalking, ElasticSearch, Opentelemetry, and so on).

  • skywalking

    APM, Application Performance Monitoring System

    Next characteristic of a good API Gateway is effortless integration with more ecosystems. You need to check if it is integrated with other products, tools, platforms, and services. For example, you can investigate if supports several application protocols, and compatibility with third-party identity providers for authentication, and if it provides pre-built connectors that you can easily integrate with Most observability platforms like (Prometheus, Skywalking, ElasticSearch, Opentelemetry, and so on).

  • Redis

    Redis is an in-memory database that persists on disk. The data model is key-value, but many different kind of values are supported: Strings, Lists, Sets, Sorted Sets, Hashes, Streams, HyperLogLogs, Bitmaps.

    Next, review deployment complexity such as DB-less versus database-backed deployments. For example, Kong does require running Cassandra or Postgres. Apigee requires Cassandra, Zookeeper, and Postgres to run, while other solutions like Express Gateway and Tyk only require Redis. Apache APISIX uses etcd as its data store, it stores and manages routing-related and plugin-related configurations in etcd in the Data Plane.

  • prometheus

    The Prometheus monitoring system and time series database.

    Next characteristic of a good API Gateway is effortless integration with more ecosystems. You need to check if it is integrated with other products, tools, platforms, and services. For example, you can investigate if supports several application protocols, and compatibility with third-party identity providers for authentication, and if it provides pre-built connectors that you can easily integrate with Most observability platforms like (Prometheus, Skywalking, ElasticSearch, Opentelemetry, and so on).

  • opentelemetry-go

    OpenTelemetry Go API and SDK

    Next characteristic of a good API Gateway is effortless integration with more ecosystems. You need to check if it is integrated with other products, tools, platforms, and services. For example, you can investigate if supports several application protocols, and compatibility with third-party identity providers for authentication, and if it provides pre-built connectors that you can easily integrate with Most observability platforms like (Prometheus, Skywalking, ElasticSearch, Opentelemetry, and so on).

  • helm

    The Kubernetes Package Manager

    Another point to consider is how difficult is it to install the API Gateway or redeploy the gateway when changes are made. Check what installation options are offered. Most modern API Gateways can be installed in many different ways(Package based, Docker, Helm, RPM) in any environment (Linux, Windows, macOS). For example, one of the biggest advantages of Kong is its wide range of installation choices, with pre-made containers such as Docker and Vagrant so you can get a deployment running quickly.

  • etcd

    Distributed reliable key-value store for the most critical data of a distributed system

    Next, review deployment complexity such as DB-less versus database-backed deployments. For example, Kong does require running Cassandra or Postgres. Apigee requires Cassandra, Zookeeper, and Postgres to run, while other solutions like Express Gateway and Tyk only require Redis. Apache APISIX uses etcd as its data store, it stores and manages routing-related and plugin-related configurations in etcd in the Data Plane.

  • apisix-dashboard

    Dashboard for Apache APISIX

    Because the configuration is a highly critical feature, we need to authenticate via an API key or by means of other auth methods. For example, most API Gateway providers such as Apache APISIX enabled token-based access to Admin API and they highly advise generating your own token and regularly changing it. Or Azure API Management relies on Azure Active Directory (Azure AD), which includes optional features such as multifactor authentication (MFA), and Azure RBAC to enable fine-grained access to the API Management service and its entities including APIs and policies.

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NOTE: The number of mentions on this list indicates mentions on common posts plus user suggested alternatives. Hence, a higher number means a more popular project.

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