Difference Between Microservice vs Monolithic
In this article, we will discuss an outline on Microservice vs Monolithic. Microservice architecture is currently one of the hottest matters in the software industry. It has already made a huge impact on Information Technology enterprises and businesses. It has also led to the digital revolution in the whole application businesses where Monolithic architecture was widely followed by all the Information Technology enterprises. Most of the huge tech giants like Google, Netflix, Amazon, etc. follow Microservices architecture for all their applications. And small enterprises mostly follow Monolithic architecture because of its simplicity. In this article, we are going to discuss the major similarities and differences between Microservices and Monolithic architecture.
What is Monolithic Architecture?
The Monolithic Architecture is regarded as the conventional method of application development. An application in Monolithic architecture is developed as a single package. The development of a normal application starts with modular layered or hexagonal architecture. This architecture is made up of different types of layers as follows:
- Presentation Layer: It is the Graphic User Interface layer that handles the HyperText Transfer Protocol (HTTP) requests using HTML or XML/JSON.
- Business Logic Layer: Business logic of the application is present in this layer.
- Database Access Layer: All the database accesses including both SQL and NoSQL of the applications happens in this layer.
- Application Integration Layer: All software integrations with other systems happen in this layer.
Even though Monolithic Architecture has a logical layered architecture, the final applications will be packaged into a single monolith and are then deployed like that. Monolithic applications lack proper modularity and it has only a single code base.
What is a Microservice Architecture?
On the other hand, Microservice architecture follows a modular approach to develop various applications. A Microservice Architecture comprises a set of small, independent, and autonomous modules which does various services. Every service should have the capability of independent implementation of its corresponding business units. Monolithic architecture is a single unit. But the Microservice architecture has a group of small independent units, which collectively works as a single application. The whole functionalities of an application are broken into separate and independent deployable modules that talk to each other by methods called Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). Each of the services in a Microservices architecture can be independently scaled, deployed, and updated easily.
The Microservice architecture is a loosely-coupled architecture, each component is independent with respect to each other. Multiple programming languages can be used for coding them. Also, they can use a different storage type for data storage.
Head to Head Comparison between Microservice vs Monolithic (Infographics)
Below are the top 8 comparisons between Microservice vs Monolithic:
4.6 (3,144 ratings)
Key differences between Microservice vs Monolithic
Let us discuss some key differences between Microservice vs Monolithic in the following points:
1. Commitment to Technology
- The advantage of developing an application that follows Microservices architecture is that developers have a wide variety of options for various technologies like operating systems, frameworks, programming languages, etc. for building an application.
- Continual commitment and dependency can be eliminated using a single stack of technology.
- A better and a new stack of technology can be adopted whenever new services are built or existing services are updated.
- Dependencies of the development team on resources to build or to update services are eliminated.
- In the Monolithic architecture, developers are forced to use only one technology, no matter whatever its limitations are.
- For example, when the framework of your application is outdated, migration to a new, better framework will be very difficult and challenging.
- In such situations, developers should rewrite the whole application in a different programming language and on a new framework, making it riskier and more time-consuming.
2. Isolation of Faults
Microservice: Even if there is an error in any of the processes, the rest of the processes will be unaffected and can be run as all the services are independent and isolated to each other.
Monolithic: On the contrary, in Monolithic architecture, any kind of misbehavior in any of the components may severely affect the working of the entire application.
3. Management of Code
- On the other hand, Microservice has a divided codebase.
- Codebases in microservices are broken into multiple code units, which makes it easy to manage and update.
- Monolithic code base sizes are huge.
- Due to the large size of monolithic codebases, it is very difficult for development teams for understanding and managing it properly.
- This further leads to the slowing down of the development processes.
4. Developments and Deployments are Continuous
- Development, deployment, operation, and scaling of every component of Microservices application are independent.
- Any update in any services of the application will not affect any other services.
- Also, there is no sharing of implementation or codebase between services.
- This leads to the ease of continuous development and the deployment of complex and huge applications.
- Its codebases are large, and the components are interdependent.
- This leads to the limitation of continuous deployment and development because to update any component, complete application must be redeployed.
- It is risky and affects all the background tasks and connected service functions are also impacted.
5. Scaling of Application
- All the services of Microservices applications are built as different modules.
- This leads to the division of team to different work, which further helps them in changing and updating production easily.
- This makes the scaling of application easier.
- Scaling of applications in monolithic architecture is a challenge to developers as it is a single package unit.
- It is impossible for the developers to work on separate modules.
- If it is possible, heavy coordination will be required during deployment and development.
Comparison Table of Microservice vs Monolithic
The table below summarizes the comparisons between Microservice vs Monolithic:
|Category||Microservice Architecture||Monolithic Architecture|
|Language||Every service can be independently developed using different programming languages.||Completely developed in a single programming language.|
|Codebase||It has multiple codebases. Every service has a separate codebase for them.||It has only a single codebase.|
|Understandability||It has high understandability and is very easy to maintain.||It is very difficult to understand and are confusing.|
|Application Scaling||Application scaling is very easy as each service can be scaled separately without scaling of the entire application.||Application scaling is very difficult as the entire application should be scaled.|
|Development and deployment||Continuous development and deployment are possible.||Continuous development and deployment are very complicated.|
|Service Startup||Quick service startup.||Time-taking service startup.|
|Data Model||It has a federated data model, allowing each service to adopt its own data model.||It has a centralized data model.|
|Consistency and Availability||Highly consistent and readily available.||Comparatively less consistent and available as any update will require the development process from scratch.|
Monolithic architecture is preferred for the development of very small, simple, and light-weight applications. As Monolithic architecture is considered as the traditional way of application development, it is always better to have a good knowledge of the same. Microservice architecture is good for the development of complex applications.
This is a guide to Microservice vs Monolithic. Here we also discuss the Microservice vs Monolithic key differences with infographics, and comparison table. You may also have a look at the following articles to learn more –