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What's Apache APISIX?

Apache APISIX is a dynamic, real-time, high-performance API gateway, based on the Nginx library and etcd.

APISIX provides rich traffic management features such as load balancing, dynamic upstream, canary release, circuit breaking, authentication, observability, and more.

You can use Apache APISIX to handle traditional north-south traffic, as well as east-west traffic between services. It can also be used as a k8s ingress controller.

The technical architecture of Apache APISIX:


You can use Apache APISIX as a traffic entrance to process all business data, including dynamic routing, dynamic upstream, dynamic certificates, A/B testing, canary release, blue-green deployment, limit rate, defense against malicious attacks, metrics, monitoring alarms, service observability, service governance, etc.

  • All platforms

    • Cloud-Native: Platform agnostic, No vendor lock-in, APISIX can run from bare-metal to Kubernetes.
    • Run Environment: Both OpenResty and Tengine are supported.
    • Supports ARM64: Don't worry about the lock-in of the infra technology.
  • Multi protocols

    • TCP/UDP Proxy: Dynamic TCP/UDP proxy.
    • Dynamic MQTT Proxy: Supports to load balance MQTT by client_id, both support MQTT 3.1.*, 5.0.
    • gRPC proxy: Proxying gRPC traffic.
    • gRPC transcoding: Supports protocol transcoding so that clients can access your gRPC API by using HTTP/JSON.
    • Proxy Websocket
    • Proxy Protocol
    • Proxy Dubbo: Dubbo Proxy based on Tengine.
    • HTTP(S) Forward Proxy
    • SSL: Dynamically load an SSL certificate.
  • Full dynamic

    • Hot Updates And Hot Plugins: Continuously updates its configurations and plugins without restarts!
    • Proxy Rewrite: Support rewrite the host, uri, schema, enable_websocket, headers of the request before send to upstream.
    • Response Rewrite: Set customized response status code, body and header to the client.
    • Serverless: Invoke functions in each phase in APISIX.
    • Dynamic Load Balancing: Round-robin load balancing with weight.
    • Hash-based Load Balancing: Load balance with consistent hashing sessions.
    • Health Checks: Enable health check on the upstream node, and will automatically filter unhealthy nodes during load balancing to ensure system stability.
    • Circuit-Breaker: Intelligent tracking of unhealthy upstream services.
    • Proxy Mirror: Provides the ability to mirror client requests.
  • Fine-grained routing

  • Security

  • OPS friendly

    • OpenTracing: support Apache Skywalking and Zipkin
    • works with external service discovery:In addition to the built-in etcd, it also supports Consul and Nacos DNS discovery mode, and Eureka
    • Monitoring And Metrics: Prometheus
    • Clustering: APISIX nodes are stateless, creates clustering of the configuration center, please refer to etcd Clustering Guide.
    • High availability: support to configure multiple etcd addresses in the same cluster.
    • Dashboard: Built-in dashboard to control APISIX.
    • Version Control: Supports rollbacks of operations.
    • CLI: start\stop\reload APISIX through the command line.
    • Stand-alone mode: Supports to load route rules from local yaml file, it is more friendly such as under the kubernetes(k8s).
    • Global Rule: Allows to run any plugin for all request, eg: limit rate, IP filter etc.
    • High performance: The single-core QPS reaches 18k with an average delay of less than 0.2 milliseconds.
    • Fault Injection
    • REST Admin API: Using the REST Admin API to control Apache APISIX, which only allows access by default, you can modify the allow_admin field in conf/config.yaml to specify a list of IPs that are allowed to call the Admin API. Also note that the Admin API uses key auth to verify the identity of the caller. The admin_key field in conf/config.yaml needs to be modified before deployment to ensure security.
    • External Loggers: Export access logs to external log management tools. (HTTP Logger, TCP Logger, Kafka Logger, UDP Logger)
  • Highly scalable

    • Custom plugins: Allows hooking of common phases, such as rewrite, access, header filer, body filter and log, also allows to hook the balancer stage.
    • Custom load balancing algorithms: You can use custom load balancing algorithms during the balancer phase.
    • Custom routing: Support users to implement routing algorithms themselves.

Configure and Installation

APISIX Installed and tested in the following systems:

CentOS 7, Ubuntu 16.04, Ubuntu 18.04, Debian 9, Debian 10, macOS, ARM64 Ubuntu 18.04

There are several ways to install the Apache Release version of APISIX:

  1. Source code compilation (applicable to all systems)

    • Installation runtime dependencies: OpenResty and etcd, and compilation dependencies: luarocks. Refer to install dependencies documentation
    • Download the latest source code release package:
      wget http://www.apache.org/dist/apisix/1.5/apache-apisix-1.5-src.tar.gz
      tar zxvf apache-apisix-1.5-src.tar.gz
    • Install the dependencies:
      cd apache-apisix-1.5
      make deps
    • check version of APISIX:
      ./bin/apisix version
    • start APISIX (Please make sure that etcd is started and enabled the v2 protocol):
      ./bin/apisix start
  2. Docker image (applicable to all systems)

    By default, the latest Apache release package will be pulled:

    docker pull apache/apisix

    The Docker image does not include etcd, you can refer to docker compose example to start a test cluster.

  3. RPM package(only for CentOS 7)

    sudo yum install -y https://github.com/apache/apisix/releases/download/1.5/apisix-1.5-0.el7.noarch.rpm
    • check version of APISIX:
      apisix version
    • start APISIX (Please make sure that etcd is started and enabled the v2 protocol):
      apisix start

Note: Apache APISIX does not yet support the v3 protocol of etcd, so you need to enable v2 protocol when starting etcd. We are doing support for etcd v3 protocol.

etcd --enable-v2=true &

For Developer

  1. For developers, you can use the latest master branch to experience more features

    • build from source code
    git clone git@github.com:apache/apisix.git
    cd apisix
    make deps
    • Docker image
    git clone https://github.com/apache/apisix-docker.git
    cd apisix-docker
    sudo docker build -f alpine-dev/Dockerfile .
  2. Getting start

    The getting started guide is a great way to learn the basics of APISIX, just follow the steps in Getting Started.

    Further, you can follow the documentation to try more plugins.

  3. Admin API

    Apache APISIX provides REST Admin API to dynamic control the Apache APISIX cluster.

  4. Plugin development

    You can refer to plugin development guide, and sample plugin echo documentation and code implementation.

    Please note that Apache APISIX plugins' added, updated, deleted, etc. are hot loaded, without restarting the service.

For more documents, please refer to Apache APISIX Document Index


APISIX has built-in support for Dashboard, which could be directly deployed by docker compose.

The dashboard only allows by default, and you can modify allow_admin in conf/config.yaml by yourself, to list the list of IPs allowed to access.


Using AWS's 8 core server, APISIX's QPS reach to 140,000 with a latency of only 0.2 ms.

benckmark script, test method and process has been open source, welcome to try and contribute.


Document Indexing for Apache APISIX

Apache APISIX vs Kong

Both of them have been covered core features of API gateway

Features Apache APISIX KONG
Dynamic upstream Yes Yes
Dynamic router Yes Yes
Health check Yes Yes
Dynamic SSL Yes Yes
L4 and L7 proxy Yes Yes
Opentracing Yes Yes
Custom plugin Yes Yes
CLI Yes Yes

The advantages of Apache APISIX

Features Apache APISIX Kong
Belongs to Apache Software Foundation Kong Inc.
Tech Architecture Nginx + etcd Nginx + postgres
Communication channels Mail list, Wechat group, QQ group, Github, meetup Github, freenode, forum
Single-core CPU, QPS(enable limit-count and prometheus plugins) 18000 1700
Latency 0.2 ms 2 ms
Dubbo Yes No
Configuration rollback Yes No
Route with TTL Yes No
Plug-in hot loading Yes No
Custom LB and route Yes No
REST API <--> gRPC transcoding Yes No
Tengine Yes No
Configuration effective time Event driven, < 1ms polling, 5 seconds
Dashboard Yes No
IdP Yes No
Configuration Center HA Yes No
Speed limit for a specified time window Yes No
Support any Nginx variable as routing condition Yes No

Benchmark comparison test details data

Videos And Articles

User Stories

Who Uses APISIX?

A wide variety of companies and organizations use APISIX for research, production and commercial product, including:

Users are encouraged to add themselves to the Powered By page.



APISIX enriches the CNCF API Gateway Landscape.


See CONTRIBUTING for details on submitting patches and the contribution workflow.


Inspired by Kong and Orange.

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Apache APISIX 是一个基于云原生、高速可扩展的开源微服务网关节点实现,其自身主要优势是高性能和强大的扩展性 spread retract


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