Best practices for Continuous API Management change in several significant ways when the API is operating on cloud architecture. API management, whether on the cloud or off, comes down to discovery, documentation, monitoring, alerting, and authentication/security. How well you implement best practices in these areas will make or break your service. In this article, we’ll summarize several considerations for adapting to the cloud.
If your business has APIs hosted in multi-cloud environments and/or on-premises, API management becomes harder. As a result, many businesses rely on a third-party service for API management, which offers a middle-man between clients and applications. However, this comes with a unique set of challenges as everything becomes more cloud-centric.
Why Adopt Continuous API Management for Cloud Architecture?
Adopting Continuous API Management for cloud architectures means taking advantage of all the benefits of the cloud, including improvements to consistency, reliability, and security, as well as new options for growth. Cloud solutions can be adopted and combined readily compared to internal solutions.
- Consistency and reliability
- Allow for architectural changes without impacting legacy offerings
- More manageable growth and adoption paths
- Multi-cloud solutions
How to Adapt Continuous API Management for Cloud Architecture
Identify Your Needs
Review your current architecture and your known goals for the future. Assess these needs and decide if it makes the most sense to use a third-party solution or try to build your own.
Find a Solution
There are many products for API Management. Based on your needs, you can evaluate tools and make a decision based on your available resources.
If your entire architecture is on a single cloud and will remain on that cloud for the foreseeable future, going with their API management service may make sense. However, this service will introduce limitations if your business is multi-cloud based or has anything hosted on-premises.
For example: if you pull data from another cloud, you will have to pay for this transferred data twice. It may introduce unnecessary steps and incur a delay in some cases. For businesses with compliance requirements around their on-premises data, an API management service hosted on a cloud may cause compliance issues.
There are third-party tools that can address all of your needs. However, in some cases you may have to make a decision about how your API Management tool sits in relation to the rest of your cloud services: either everything must go through the cloud where your API management is, or you will need to introduce a self-hosted API management gateway.
Introduce Self-Hosted Gateways (If Necessary)
You can introduce self-hosted gateways if your solution doesn’t support multi-cloud or hybrid solutions and it doesn’t make sense to pull everything into the cloud where your API management is.
In this case, your business will be required to build and manage these self-hosted gateways. The gateway you create can pull the essential aspects of API management wherever you need it—another cloud or on-premises. It is not building an API Management tool from scratch but instead bringing over aspects from your original solution where you need them.
Log Errors and Check Statuses
Use API management to log errors and check statuses across all of your services to ensure that everything is operating correctly. One key advantage of an API Management tool is getting notifications of errors from outside connections.
Adapt and Utilize API Management
Ultimately, there are ways to adopt continuous API Management for your business’s cloud architecture, no matter how complex. Once you’ve adapted this, you will have all the benefits it offers!