Platform reference architecture on Azure

We looked at the Internal Developer Platforms built and run by some of the world’s best platform engineering teams. We condensed our key learnings for Azure setups into this reference architecture whitepaper.

“By 2026 80% of enterprises will have built an Internal Developer Platform” - Gartner

You should read this if you want to...

  • Learn about IDP design principles
  • Understand how architectural components fit together
  • Design great interaction patterns for platform engineers and developers
  • Zoom in on building golden paths for developer self-service

Platform Engineering is the hot new thing in town. But too often we stop at the buzzwords rather than concretely show how platforms are built. While implementations differ, there are common patterns that emerge.

After having architected, built and observed hundreds of platforms, we have consolidated our learnings in this whitepaper. These architectures in enterprises that are moving or have moved to the cloud are strikingly similar. Both in the tools deployed and the approaches used.

Tools in this architectures

This architecture focuses on the Azure ecosystem and includes Azure Cloud, GitHub Actions, Backstage, Humanitec, Flux CD, Terraform, and more. Please note that this architecture is compatible with any other tooling choice. Keep in mind, you can easily swap components, e.g. Gitlab for Codepipeline as a CI-tool and the architecture would still be valid.

Platform reference architecture on Azure