Service mesh abstracts the network from developers to solve three main pain points: How do services communicate securely with one another How can services implement network resilience When things go wrong, can we identify what and why Service mesh implementations usually follow a similar architecture: traffic flows through control points between services (usually service proxies deployed as sidecar processes) while an out-of-band set of nodes is responsible for defining the behavior and management of the control points. This loosely breaks out into an architecture of a "data plane" through which requests flow and a "control plane" for managing a service mesh. Different service mesh implementations use different data planes depending on their use cases and familiarity with particular technology. The control plane implementations vary between service-mesh implementations as well. In this talk, we'll take a look at three different control plane implementations with Istio, Linkerd and Consul, their strengths, and their specific tradeoffs to see how they chose to solve each of the three pain points from above. We can use this information to make choices about a service mesh or to inform our journey if we choose to build a control plane ourselves.