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The TARS Foundation: The Formation of a Microservices Ecosystem


During the 1960s and 1970’s, software developers typically used monolithic architectures on mainframes and minicomputers for software development, and no single application was able to satisfy the needs of most end-users. Vertical industries used software with a smaller code footprint with simpler interfaces to other applications, and scalability was not a priority at the time.

With the rise and development of the Internet, developers gradually separated the service layer from these monolithic architectures, followed by RPC and then Client/Server.

But existing architectures were unable to keep up with the needs of larger enterprises and exploding data traffic. Beginning in the middle of the 1990s, distributed architectures began to rise in popularity, with service-oriented architectures (known as SOA) becoming increasingly dominant.

In the mid-2000s, microservices began to appear, and a set of popular frameworks based on microservice architectures were developed, with TARS appearing in 2008. After being used at scale and enhanced for 10 years, TARS became a Linux Foundation project in 2018.

Figure 1. Interest in microservices has grown exponentially, as demonstrated by search trends on Google.

Introducing the TARS Foundation

Today, on March 10th, 2020, The Linux Foundation is excited to announce that the TARS project has transitioned into the TARS Foundation. The TARS Foundation is an open source microservice foundation to support the rapid growth of contributions and membership for a community focused on building an open microservices platform.

A Neutral Home for Open Source Microservices Projects

The TARS Foundation is a nonprofit foundation that focuses on open source technology that helps businesses embrace microservices architecture as they innovate into new areas and scale their applications.

It will continue to support the TARS project by growing the community that has been operating under the Linux Foundation since 2018. The Linux Foundation offers a neutral home for infrastructure, open governance, and community engagement support, aiding open source microservices projects to empower any industry to turn ideas into applications at scale quickly.

The TARS Foundation is working on addressing the problems that may occur in using microservices, including reducing the difficulties of development and service governance. It seeks to solve multi-programming language interoperability, data transfer issues, consistency of data storage, and ensuring high performance while supporting massive requests.

The TARS Foundation wishes to accommodate a variety of bottom-up content to build a better microservice ecosystem. It will include but will not be limited to, infrastructure, storage, development framework, service governance, DevOps, and applications based on any programming languages.

It Begins With a Mature Microservice Framework

The modern enterprise is in need of a better microservices platform for their modern applications to support development through DevOps best practices, comprehensive service governance, high-performance data transfer, storage scalability with massive data requests, and built-in cross-language interoperability (e.g., Golang, Java, C++, PHP, Node.js).

In support of these growing requirements, the TARS project provides a mature, high-performance RPC framework that supports multiple programming languages developed by Tencent (0700.HK). Since the initial open source contribution by Tencent, many other organizations have made significant contributions to extending the platform’s features and value.

Figure 2. The TARS Project Microservice Ecosystem.

TARS can quickly build systems and automatically generate code, taking into account ease of use and high performance. At the same time, TARS supports multiple programming languages, including C++, Golang, Java, Node.js, PHP, and Python. TARS can help developers and enterprises to quickly build their own stable and reliable distributed applications in a microservices manner, in order to focus on business logic to effectively improve operational efficiency.

The advantages of multi-language support, agile research and development, high availability, and efficient operation make TARS an enterprise-grade product out of the box. TARS has been used and refined in Tencent for the past ten years and has been widely used in Tencent’s QQ and WeChat social network, financial services, edge computing, automotive, video, online games, maps, application market and security, and other hundreds of core businesses. The scale of microservices has reached over one million nodes, perfecting the practice of the industry-standard DevOps philosophy and Tencent’s mass service approach.

Why Should Projects Choose The TARS Foundation?

Joining the TARS Foundation will provide member organizations and projects with the following benefits:

  • Community Engagement: The TARS Foundation will host a constellation of open source projects. Members of the TARS Foundation will leverage many programs to engage with project ecosystems and share their ideas and use cases.
  • Thought Leadership: Members of the TARS Foundation will be able to network and help shape the evolving microservices ecosystem.
  • Marketing Amplification and Brand Awareness: Members can broaden their project’s reach and awareness in the community with TARS Foundation marketing programs.

As the TARS Foundation has been created to develop and foster the open microservices ecosystem, it will establish different functional mailing lists to support its user communities.

The TARS Foundation will also establish a series of mechanisms for the incubation and development of new projects. After a project has agreed to join the Foundation, the appropriate incubation and maturation route will be tailored according to the project circumstances.

After meeting all incubation requirements, the TARS Foundation will announce the project’s graduation. In addition to providing a technical oversight committee and a user community, the governing board will look after these projects by reviewing each project’s unique situation, providing strategic decisions, and assisting with their overall development.

Partner Commitments to the TARS Foundation

The TARS Foundation aims to empower any industry vertical to realize their ideas with their implementation of microservices. To date, TARS has worked with many industries, including fintech, e-sports, edge computing, online video, e-commerce, and education, among others.

As a result of over a decade of industry leadership in developing open microservices projects, many companies from different industries, such as Arm, Tencent, AfterShip, Ampere, API7, Kong, and Zenlayer, have committed to and have joined The TARS Foundation as members and partners.


TARS has been developed, hardened, and enhanced within Tencent for more than ten years. It is widely used in Tencent’s QQ and WeChat social, video, e-Sports, maps, application market and security, and other hundreds of core businesses. The scale of microservices has reached over one million nodes, perfecting the practice of the industry-standard DevOps philosophy and Tencent’s mass service approach.


Arm is the world’s leading semiconductor intellectual property (IP) provider. Arm has been working with Tencent over the last year to undertake a complete port of TARS microservices to the Arm architecture. That porting effort is now complete and is available through the Akraino Blueprint ecosystem. The first two Arm deployments within Tencent are AR/VR and autonomous vehicle use cases for internal Tencent use.


AfterShip is a Hong Kong startup company offering automated shipment tracking using a SaaS model and supports over 400 shipping services worldwide.

“We believe microservices will be a new concept for our products, and the TARS Foundation can empower its usage.”


Ampere focuses on cloud-native hardware. As such, it needs to ensure that any software used on that hardware runs exceedingly well to meet the demands of their customers’ expectations.

“Microservices have become very popular for several years, so we think cooperation with the TARS Foundation and focusing on microservices will allow us to achieve our vision.”


API7 is an open source software startup company delivering a cloud-native microservices API gateway that aims to deliver the ultimate performance, security, open source, and scalable platform for all APIs and microservices. Compared with traditional API gateways, it has dynamic routing and plug-in hot loading, which is especially suitable for API management under a microservices-based system.


Kong is the world’s most popular open source microservice API gateway. Kong is used to secure, manage, and orchestrate microservice APIs.

“We look forward to collaborating with the TARS Foundation members to drive microservices adoption and innovation across businesses of all industries.”


Zenlayer is an edge cloud services provider that enables businesses to improve digital user experiences quickly and globally, particularly in emerging markets.

“Integration of microservices with edge computing is now widespread. We look forward to doing more research on that and with the TARS Foundation.”


The TARS Foundation can help make the microservices ecosystem more effective, building a more aligned community of contributors and supporters. As more technology-first companies deploy microservices in production, we expect the trend to extend to traditional industries that are transforming. We hope that more people and companies will participate in the TARS Foundation and welcome everyone to contribute to a better and more open microservice ecosystem.

“The TARS Foundation will accelerate innovation for the microservices ecosystem through an open governance model that allows for rapid and high-quality contributions and collaboration. The Linux Foundation is very happy to support this work and enable its growth.” — Jim Zemlin, Executive Director of the Linux Foundation

A TARS Foundation contributory post

Kubernetes – Getting Started With Rook

Kubernetes - Getting Started With Rook

In this video, Tim Serewicz takes us through the basics of Rook, which offers open source, cloud-native storage for Kubernetes. You will hear about production-ready management for file, block and object storage with Rook and how to quickly get it running with Ceph as a storage provider. This tutorial includes details about how to use the storage with PVCs and pods, and also explains what ReadOnlyOnce really means.

See all the Kubernetes training options, including a free introductory course, offered by the Linux Foundation.

HashiCorp raises $175 million in late-stage round for $5.1B valuation

San Francisco-based cloud computing firm HashiCorp Inc. today said it has raised $175 million in a Series E round of funding, giving the company a valuation of $5.1 billion. The Series E financing came from Franklin Templeton Investments. Only in late 2018, the HashiCorp was valued at $1.9 billion.

[Source: SiliconANGLE]

Platform9 Adds More Tiers to Kubernetes Service

Platform9 today launched a managed Kubernetes service, dubbed the Freedom plan, that provides free access to Kubernetes clusters of up to 20 nodes spanning a maximum of 800 virtual CPUs running on three clusters. In addition, Platform9 is adding a separate Growth plan that provides access to 50 nodes spanning a maximum of 2,000 virtual CPUs for IT teams that need to scale a Kubernetes environment quickly. Priced less than $500 per month with a minimum of three nodes, the Growth plan comes with 24×7 support and a 99.9% service level agreement (SLA), according to Platform9.

[Source: Container Journal]

Tails 4.4 released

Version 4.4 of The Amnesic Incognito Live System (or Tails) has been released. It has fixed a bunch of security vulnerabilities in Tails 4.3; users are advised to “upgrade as soon as possible”. Tails 4.4 brings new versions of the Tor Browser (9.0.6), Thunderbird (68.5.0), and the Linux kernel (5.4.19). It also fixes some problems with WiFi. Tails is a Linux distribution that runs from removable media; it is focused on privacy, security, and anonymity.

[Source: LWN.net]

Aqua Security debuts open-source container image registry scanner

Container security startup Aqua Security Software Ltd. says its open-source tool for scanning container images is now integrated by default with registries from Docker Inc. and the Mirantis Docker Enterprise platform, as well as Harbor, an open-source image registry project run by the Cloud Native Computing Foundation.
[Source: SiliconAngle]

GitHub Acquires npm.inc

npm.inc, the company behind the popular Node Package Manager (npm) is set to be acquired by GitHub. Founded in 2009, npm became extremely popular and is the default package manager for JavaScript runtime environment Node.js. With this acquisition GitHub will invest in the infrastructure and the platform “to ensure that npm is fast, reliable, and scalable,” said Nat Friedman, CEO of GitHub.
[Source: TFiR]

Debian 11 “Bullseye” To Begin Code Freeze In Early 2021

The Debian release team has published their tentative freeze dates for the next major version of their Linux operating system, Debian 11 Bullseye.

In their draft calendar published this morning, the first milestone for Debian 11.0 would be the transition and build-essentials freeze set for 12 January 2021. The second milestone is the soft code freeze one month later on 12 February 2021. The third milestone is the actual hard freeze for the key packages and other packages lacking automated testing, which would be on 12 March.

[Source: Phoronix]

How to Install Netbeans on Ubuntu and Other Linux

NetBeans is an open source integrated development environment that comes with good cross-platform support. This tool has been recognized by the Java and C/C++ development community widely.

The development environment is quite flexible. You can configure this tool to support a wide array of development objectives. Practically, you can develop Web, Desktop and Mobile Applications without leaving this platform. It’s amazing, isn’t it? Besides this, the user can add a wide array of known languages such as PHP, C, C++, HTML, Ajax, JavaScript, JSP, Ruby on Rails and the list goes on and on!

If you are looking to install Netbeans on Linux, you have several ways to do that. I have written this tutorial primarily for Ubuntu but some installation methods are applicable to other distributions as well.

[Source: It’s FOSS]

10 Open-Source Datasets For Text Classification

One of the popular fields of research, text classification is the method of analysing textual data to gain meaningful information. According to sources, the global text analytics market is expected to post a CAGR of more than 20% during the period 2020-2024. Text classification can be used in a number of applications such as automating CRM tasks, improving web browsing, e-commerce, among others.

Check out 10 open-source datasets, which can be used for text classification. The Amazon Review dataset, for instance, consists of a few million Amazon customer reviews (input text) and star ratings (output labels) for learning how to train fastText for sentiment analysis. The size of the dataset is 493MB.

[Source: Analytics India Magazine]