Open Service Mesh (OSM)

build report codecov License: MIT release

Open Service Mesh (OSM) is a lightweight, extensible, Cloud Native service mesh that allows users to uniformly manage, secure, and get out-of-the-box observability features for highly dynamic microservice environments.

The OSM project builds on the ideas and implementations of many cloud native ecosystem projects including Linkerd, Istio, Consul, Envoy, Kuma, Helm, and the SMI specification.


OSM runs an Sidecar based control plane on Kubernetes, can be configured with SMI APIs, and works by injecting an Sidecar proxy as a sidecar container next to each instance of your application. The proxy contains and executes rules around access control policies, implements routing configuration, and captures metrics. The control plane continually configures proxies to ensure policies and routing rules are up to date and ensures proxies are healthy.

Core Principles

  1. Simple to understand and contribute to
  2. Effortless to install, maintain, and operate
  3. Painless to troubleshoot
  4. Easy to configure via Service Mesh Interface (SMI)


Documentation pertaining to the usage of Open Service Mesh is made available at

Documentation pertaining to development, release workflows, and other repository specific documentation, can be found in the docs folder.


  1. Easily and transparently configure traffic shifting for deployments
  2. Secure service to service communication by enabling mTLS
  3. Define and execute fine grained access control policies for services
  4. Observability and insights into application metrics for debugging and monitoring services
  5. Integrate with external certificate management services/solutions with a pluggable interface
  6. Onboard applications onto the mesh by enabling automatic sidecar injection of Sidecar proxy

Project status

OSM is under active development and is NOT ready for production workloads.


Please search open issues on GitHub, and if your issue isn’t already represented please open a new one. The OSM project maintainers will respond to the best of their abilities.

SMI Specification support

Kind SMI Resource Supported Version Comments
TrafficTarget v1alpha3
HTTPRouteGroup v1alpha4
TCPRoute v1alpha4
UDPRoute not supported
TrafficSplit v1alpha2
TrafficMetrics * v1alpha1 🚧 In Progress 🚧

OSM Design

Read more about OSM’s high level goals, design, and architecture.



  • Kubernetes cluster running Kubernetes v1.20.0 or greater
  • kubectl current context is configured for the target cluster install
    • kubectl config current-context

Get the OSM CLI

The simplest way of installing Open Service Mesh on a Kubernetes cluster is by using the osm CLI.

Download the osm binary from the Releases page. Unpack the osm binary and add it to $PATH to get started.

sudo mv ./osm /usr/local/bin/osm

Install OSM

$ osm install

OSM Install Demo

See the installation guide for more detailed options.


The OSM Bookstore demo is a step-by-step walkthrough of how to install a bookbuyer and bookstore apps, and configure connectivity between these using SMI.

Using OSM

After installing OSM, onboard a microservice application to the service mesh.

OSM Usage Patterns

  1. Traffic Management
  2. Observability
  3. Certificates
  4. Sidecar Injection


Connect with the Open Service Mesh community:

Development Guide

If you would like to contribute to OSM, check out the development guide.

Code of Conduct

This project has adopted the CNCF Code of Conduct. See for further details.


This software is covered under the Apache 2.0 license. You can read the license here.


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