My journey with Traefik started a few years ago when I struggled to manage NGINX in combination with containers. Since Docker/Containers are dynamic in nature, traditional proxies load balancers were not matching 1:1 with dynamic infrastructures.
I first started moving my projects to Traefik about three years ago. I dug up an old GitHub Repo that highlights this journey (GitHub is awesome like this). Three years ago, wow! During the migration, I learned more about Traefik, the features, and became involved in the community.
Now, three years later. I recommend Traefik to everyone wanting to start a project with Docker, Kubernetes, Cloud, or On-Prem. To clarify, I don't receive any financial compensation from Traefik except for stickers and T-shirts. But I sure love the Traefik logo!
I have become very familiar with the Traefik use-cases through the various using Traefik. Typically, I am presenting these use-cases at workshops or during customer engagements. Now, I thought of providing the list also here.
Automatic Configuration Discovery - OK, this is one of the top reasons to use Traefik. No longer do you have to configure each change to your Infrastructure or workload. It was a real headache to manage with NGINX in the past. Traefik alleviates this pain by auto discovering changes in configuration both in your Infrastructure and the Workload behind Traefik.
Routing & Load Balancing - Routing and Load Balancing actually - ties in with Auto-discovery above. Now, when you scale your application Traefik automatically updates and load balances the updated workload. Additionally, you can define all your routing for your entire Infrastructure in easy to maintain YAML or TOML code.
Let's Encrypt Integration - HTTPS/Let's Encrypt to save the day. Traefik integrates with your Domain hosting company/DNS provider to quickly generate Let's Encrypt certificates. What is incredible is using the DNS challenge, which enables us to create new sub-domains dynamically quickly. Then you receive a Let's Encrypt certificate automatically assigned to your sub-domain. WOW!
Dashboard - The Dashboard is not only visually appealing, but it is extremely useful as well. I find it easier to visualize configurations, errors, or my applications' status with the Dashboard rather than scanning text files or logs. The Dashboard also integrates with the new Pilot SaaS platform, which also provides metrics and security/health alerts.
Monitoring/Tracing Integrations - I am quite passionate about Observability, so having native integrations to Prometheus to build Grafana visualizations was a feature that I use daily. Metrics tell the story of your Infrastructure and lets you sleep at night.
Bonus amazing community - When I first started my journey with Traefik, the community was very much in its infancy and mostly working via GitHub. A few years later, we now have a solid community with Traefik Ambassadors, community forums, slack channels, and more. Did I mention the stickers are awesome?
Now you know the main reasons to use Traefik. If you are still not convinced, check out their YouTube channel where companies like Rackspace, Mailchimp, and the people trying to create a black hole in Switzerland CERN all talk about how they use and embrace Traefik.
OK, now you are convinced. I would recommend starting with some getting started examples to deploy Traefik today. After, if you want to understand everything about Traefik, be sure to attend The Complete Traefik Training Course.
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