All posts by Nadeesha Gamage

WSO2 API Manager for Small and Medium Enterprises

WSO2 API Manager provides a very light-weight, robust and a scalable API management solution for organizations who want to manage APIs. WSO2 API Manager comes as a single product distribution but has five different components and can be deployed as individual components allowing greater flexibility in deployment while adhering to internal security policies of the organization. Running WSO2 API Manager as components allows more flexibility when scaling the solution and optimizes the resource usage.

WSO2 API Manager is deployed as a distributed deployment at many large organizations that expose APIs for both internal and external service consumers with millions of API calls serviced during a day. These organizations rely on WSO2 API Manager to deliver critical services to its stakeholders, which has a direct impact on their business operations. A distributed deployment can typically cater over 2500 API calls a second which is a staggering 200 million+ API calls a day.

Even though this kind of a requirement holds true for large-scale organizations, there are many organizations who need to start small and want a simple API manager deployment to support their requirements. WSO2 provides two solutions for such customers.

  1. On-Cloud – WSO2 API Cloud, which is a subscription-based API manager solution that you can subscribe to and pay based on the API usage. WSO2 API cloud offer plans ranging from 250, 000 to 50 million API calls a day.
  2. On-Premise – WSO2 offers an all-in-one API manager deployment pattern that allows you to deploy the WSO2 API Manager on-premise as a single instance. This type of on-premise deployment can support up to 500 API calls a second (nearly 43 million API calls a day). More details on this option are given below.

An all-in-one API Manager deployment has i5 components (Gateway, Key Manager, Store, Publisher and Traffic Manager) deployed inside a single product distribution. The deployment is very easy to setup and WSO2 provides a very comprehensive setup guide1 that provide step by step instructions on how to deploy the product. All-in-One API Manager can be deployed as a single active node, in Active/Passive mode or as an Active/Active node cluster. The diagrams shown below visually illustrates the 3 types of possible deployment patterns.

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Fig 1: Single API Manager node

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Fig 2: Active/Passive deployment

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Fig 3: Active/Active API Manager deployment

It is recommended to deploy the API Manager fronted by a load balancer for all three deployment patterns. If APIs need to be exposed for external consumption it is recommended to use a Reverse Proxy or a Firewall along with the load balancer. A Reverse Proxy or a Firewall is required to route legitimate traffic from outside the network to the API Manager node that resides in the LAN. It is recommended to configure the API Manager to work with an external RDBMS to ensure reliability. If API Manager is deployed as an active/active or active/passive setup it would require a content synchronization mechanism such as Rsync2 (DeltaCopy or cwRsync for Windows) to synchronize APIs between the two nodes.

With the new all-in-one API Manager deployment pattern, there are multiple options for an organization to structure their deployment. If you are building a large-scale API Manager deployment then it would be recommended to start with a distributed API Manager deployment. However, if you want to start small and make the API Management platform available quickly this type of a deployment would be the ideal choice.