Welcome to HashiCorp's Learn platform! Here you'll find step-by-step examples of how to perform common Consul tasks.
Consul is a full-featured service mesh solution that solves the networking and security challenges of operating microservices and cloud infrastructure. Consul offers a software-driven approach to routing and segmentation. It also brings additional benefits such as failure handling, retries, and network observability. Each of these features can be used individually as needed or they can be used together to build a full service mesh.
»HashiCorp whiteboard video
Review our video below for a brief introduction to Consul and to understand Consul's use cases.
Now that you understand Consul's benefits and use cases, continue to learn more about the basic architecture of a Consul deployment.
Consul is a distributed system designed to run on a cluster of nodes. A node can be a physical server, cloud instance, virtual machine, or container. Connected together, the set of nodes Consul runs on is called a datacenter. Within the datacenter, Consul can run in two modes server or client. Server agents maintain the consistent state for Consul. Clients are a light-weight process that run on every node where services are running. A datacenter will have between 3 - 5 servers and many clients.
This "Get Started" collection of HashiCorp Learn will help you build mental models to understand how Consul works with tutorials that you can run locally on your computer. Complete the tutorials in this section sequentially; some of them rely on the previous ones.
Continue to the next tutorial, Install Consul, to install Consul on your local machine.
Alternatively, you can get hands-on experience with one of the other Get Started tutorials for Consul on the other supported platforms.