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Networking architecture

All of a preview environment's containers are deployed within a single Kubernetes Pod. Containers within this Pod share their network namespaces—including their IP address. This means that containers within an environment can all reach each other on localhost. This is similar to using Docker's host network.

This also means that containers must coordinate port usage, but this is no different from processes on a workstation or virtual machine. Be careful not to configure two or more containers to bind to the same TCP port.

Load Balancing Incoming Traffic

Every preview environment includes a load balancer that receives incoming HTTPS requests and routes them to the HTTP port specified for the container which receives incoming requests. Preview load balancers are set up and managed automatically, so you don't need to enable or configure them. The load balancer also handles HTTPS certificates for you; the certificate authority is trusted by all popular web browsers and devices.

The load balancer will also set up an external IP address and DNS record, so you and your stakeholders can access it from anywhere via a public HTTPS URL.

Separate preview environments do not share an internal network, so they may only communicate over the public Internet.

Limitations

  • Only HTTP traffic is forwarded by the load balancer, and only to one container within each preview. If your application needs external traffic that is not HTTP, and/or needs to route external traffic to more than one container, please let us know on Slack!

  • Since all containers in a preview deployment exist within a Kubernetes Pod, they necessarily share the same lifecycle. By default, Uffizzi monitors the health of a Pod and will restart containers that fail or otherwise exit. While this design simplifies networking, scaling and other factors, it can lead to unexpected behavior when some of your containers are intended to persist while others terminate by design (such as a migration process). As a workaround, you may need to wrap your process in a command loop to keep it from terminiating. One-time jobs are on the Uffizzi roadmap to support this usecase.

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