Introduction to the Temporal Server

Overview

The Temporal Server is a micro-service orchestration platform. It can be thought of as a layer in your technology stack that exists between your compute servers and your executable source code. It is completely open source and can be run in a variety of cloud or on-premise environments. A single Server instance can be used for many different use cases simultaneously, or be tied to a single application.

Design

The "Temporal Server" is actually a cluster of different services. The Server is responsible for tracking the state of Workflows and associated durable timers. It is also responsible for maintaining internal Task Queues which are used for queuing Tasks to be consumed by external Workers. Read the system architecture page to get a view of the server's topology.

Docker images

The fastest way to start building Workflow applications, and test out the system, is to follow the quick install guide that utilizes docker-compose. The Temporal server can be up and running on your local machine with just a few commands. And there are several preconfigured docker images to choose from.

Helm charts

If you want to see how Temporal runs on a Kubernetes cluster, the fastest way is to use the Temporal Helm Chart.

Go application

You can include the Temporal server package and run the server as your own Go application.

Hosted service

If you want to use a hosted solution, checkout out Temporal Cloud.

Security

Keep your instance secure with encryption and pluggable auth protocols.

Dependencies

Different versions of Temporal support different dependencies.

Optional features

Temporal supports some optional features such as Workflow search and archiving data.

  • Workflow search: The Temporal server supports Workflow search with filters, by default, without the need for any additional dependencies. However, Temporal's default search capabilities are limited in comparison to instances that are integrated with ElasticSearch. Integrating ElasticSearch enables the use of customizable search attributes and complex search queries. Read the Workflow search guide for details.
  • Archiving data: Want to back up your Workflow event history? You can with a cloud provider of your choice. Read our guide to archiving data for details.