Alibaba Cloud Releases EventBridge to Support Cloud Native Architecture

Introduction to EventBridge

Core Capabilities of EventBridge

EventBridge is a brand-new cloud service completely designed for cloud native designing and architecture. The core capabilities provided by EventBridge include integration, choreography and drive, and data tunnel.

Integration

The ability and degree of integration are the key points of a service. EventBridge will connect cloud services, cloud applications, and SaaS applications in a cross-organization and cross-cloud manner. The connection requires low cost or even no cost, with low code or even no code.

Cloud Service Integration

Nowadays, Alibaba Cloud provides hundreds of mature cloud services and millions of computing instances, with hundreds of millions of cloud events generated every day. However, these events are currently out of control. They are a treasure of data waiting to be mined. Under this circumstance, EventBridge connects most of Alibaba Cloud services. Serving as an event source or event target, EventBridge improves the centralized governance capability for cloud events of Alibaba Cloud, and fully discovers the business value of cloud events. At the same time, EventBridge provides all-in-one connectivity services to ensure a better experience of cloud migration and cloud services utilization.

Cloud Application Integration

The ultimate goal of going to the cloud is to fully enjoy the technical benefits of cloud computing. Therefore, the process of cloud migration needs not only to change the host, but also to reconstruct the platform and systems. EventBridge provides abundant integration capabilities to make applications better connect to and use cloud services. At present, users can access Alibaba Cloud EventBridge ecosystem through the official HTTP interface of EventBridge, multi-language clients (Java, Golang, Python, C#, and PHP), and the open-source client of the CloudEvents community.

Third-party SaaS Integration

Alibaba Cloud adheres to the strategy of being integrated for SaaS. It is expected that a number of excellent SaaS providers will grow on Alibaba Cloud. EventBridge will provide a convenient way for SaaS to be deeply integrated with the Alibaba Cloud ecosystem and services.

Choreography and Drive

The best practice of Serverless application architectures is the event-driven design. Whether it is traditional microservice or function computing, EventBridge greatly simplifies the development of event-driven architectures. Massive amounts of functions and microservices will be choreographed orderly in the form of events.

Data Tunnel

Another core capability of EventBridge is to serve as a tunnel for streaming data. As a data tunnel, EventBridge uses the CloudEvents specification and the Schema registry (coming soon) to uniformly describe these data, and provides basic filtering and conversion capabilities. By doing so, EventBridge is able to implement data routing between different data warehouses, data processing programs, and between data analysis and processing systems.

Basic Model of EventBridge

EventBridge has several basic concepts: event, event bus, event source, event rule, and event target.

Event

Event represents the occurrence, rules, and status changes of things. In the cloud era, events are ubiquitous. Any service, application, or even resource on the cloud is generating events all the time. These services, applications, and resources are called event sources. Event sources come from different organizations and environments. They do not have any expectations on how events will be responded to. Meanwhile, event targets subscribe to events through centralized event buses. They rely on the self-description capability of events to understand and process events at low cost.

Event Bus

The concept of event bus is abstract. In short, event bus is a carrier of events. The event bus of Alibaba Cloud EventBridge has the multi-tenant capacity in the user side. Each bus has a unique Amazon Resource Name (ARN). Events are sent to event buses and then routed to event targets according to event rules.

Rule

Rules are used to filter the events in the event buses. After certain conversion, the successfully filtered events are routed to the Alibaba Cloud target services or HTTP gateways specified in the rules.

Architecture of EventBridge

As a brand new cloud service, EventBridge fully adopts the cloud native technology stack. As is shown in the following figure, EventBridge is built on the Kubernetes cluster provided by Container Service for Kubernetes. A complete set of Kubernetes-based DevOps R&D system has also been designed. In the R&D phase, GitOps is practiced to improve the delivery and iteration efficiency. In the testing phase, a large number of automated tests are deployed. In the publishing phase, a complete gray release mechanism is provided. In the O&M phase, Kubernetes’s self-healing capability greatly reduces the O&M costs. Besides, a cloud-native monitoring system is established based on services such as Prometheus Service and Log Service (SLS).

Typical Scenarios for EventBridge

This section lists three typical cases based on the available capabilities of EventBridge. As the EventBridge ecosystem becomes increasingly rich, more business scenarios will be able to apply EventBridge in the future. A series of model projects will be offered in the near future for users to reference, so that they can quickly adopt the event-driven approach to their own business scenarios.

Scenario 1: 360-degree Business Panorama

The larger the enterprises grow, the more business stability they demand. To prevent more failures in the increasingly complex scenarios, it is particularly important to build an all-round observation and monitoring system for applications. For traditional applications, after their reconstruction based on cloud native, they can enjoy the benefits of cloud native technologies. At the same time, however, they are also confronted with more complexity in how to manage the stability of the applications. The most challenging issue is that it is difficult to control changes. The business relies on the entire cloud infrastructure, physical and network resources in the IaaS layer, cloud services in the PaaS layer, and even the upstream and downstream services. These services are so constantly changing that it is difficult for users to immediately perceive the occurrence and corresponding impact of these changes. In fact, 95% of faults are caused by changes.

Scenario 2: Webpage Screenshots for Daily Briefings

Scenario 1 is relatively complex, so let’s take a look at another scenario that can be easily implemented. Use EventBridge-driven Function Compute to take webpage screenshots, and send them through email to make daily briefings.

Scenario 3: Smart Furniture Store of New Retail

How many scenarios can EventBridge be applied to in the future? Let’s look at the scenario of smart furniture store of new retail.

Future of EventBridge

As an event hub on the cloud, the core capability of EventBridge is to provide connectivity. Therefore, EventBridge will focus on building an ecological network in the future. Applications in online business, IoT, or big data scenarios can all be integrated to EventBridge with low code or even no code. If the applications are deployed in private Internet data centers (IDCs) or in cloud environments that are not provided by Alibaba Cloud, a secure and reliable integration methods will also be provided.

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