March 16, 2022

Apollo Federation 2 and Gateway 2.0 are now available in preview

Vivek Ravishankar
Product Marketing at Apollo
Last updated April 13, 2022

🚀 🎉 Heads up – Federation 2 and Gateway 2.x are now GA! Check out the GA announcement blog or head over to the Federation docs to get started.


Four months ago we announced Apollo Federation 2 – the next generation of Federation with new features designed to improve the graph developer experience and make it easy for anyone to build, manage, and scale a unified graph.

Since then, we’ve been collecting feedback from members of the community and our customers that have tried out the alpha release and have been iterating on the Federation 2 spec to make it viable for the larger GraphQL ecosystem. 

With the improvements we’ve made in recent months, we’re excited to move Federation 2 along with Apollo Gateway 2.0 out of alpha into public preview!

What you need to know about the preview

With Federation 2 and Gateway 2.0 now in preview, here are some highlights and improvements to be aware of:

  • There are no breaking changes between Federation 2 alpha and preview.
  • Apollo Gateway 0.X does not support Federation 2. If you would like to use Apollo Gateway with Federation 2, you must use Gateway 2.0 or higher.
  • Graphs in Apollo Studio with Federation 2 composition enabled will automatically be updated from alpha to preview.
  • If you have Federation 2 composition enabled, Federation 1 subgraphs will automatically be converted to Federation 2 during composition. You can continue to use your Federation 1 subgraphs as long as you like.
  • @link and @shareable are now supported in the Fed 2 subgraph syntax.
  • subgraph-js subgraph library now supports Fed 2 subgraph syntax.

Getting started with Federation 2 & Gateway 2.0

Ready to start using Federation 2? Check out our docs on moving to Federation 2. Here’s a quick overview of the steps you’ll need to take:

1. Upgrade @apollo/gateway

To use Federation 2, you must be using Gateway 2.0 or higher (or Apollo Router). Upgrading from Gateway 0.X to Gateway 2.0 is as easy as bumping the version in your package.json.

Gateway 2.0 is still compatible with Federation 1, so you can upgrade without breaking your existing graph.

2. Turn on Federation 2 composition

Once your runtime is compatible with Federation 2, you’ll need to take a moment to turn on Fed 2 composition for Managed Federation or for the Rover CLI, depending on how you compose your federated graph.

Federation 2 composition is backward compatible with Federation 1 subgraphs (🎉), so turning it on won’t break your existing graph.

Managed Federation

If you use managed Federation, you can turn on Fed 2 composition for specific variants. Navigate to the “Manage Variants” section of your graph’s settings page and click the meatball menu next to a variant.

Click “Edit Build Configuration” and select Federation 2 under the “Federation Version” dropdown.

Rover CLI

If you use the Rover CLI for Federation composition, you’ll need to install the latest version of Rover and install the Federation 2 plugin. You can find detailed instructions on how to do so here.

3. Modify your subgraphs at your own pace

At this point, your graph is already running on Federation 2 – congrats! Now, to make the most out of Fed 2, you’ll want to modify your subgraphs to take advantage of its more flexible composition model. 

Since Fed 2 composition is backwards compatible with Fed 1 subgraphs, service teams can modify their subgraphs at their own pace without breaking composition! You can learn about all of the improvements available in the Fed 2 subgraph syntax in the documentation.

What’s next?

We can’t wait for you to experience the next generation of Apollo Federation and Gateway 2.0! 🚀 If you’re currently using Federation 1, check our guide on moving to Federation 2, or if you’re new to Federation, our quickstart guide is a great place to get started. And don’t forget, we would love to know about your experience with Federation 2, so be sure to leave us your thoughts on community.apollographql.com.

Written by

Vivek Ravishankar

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