Apache ActiveMQ Review
Price point and licensing are the most valuable features relative to Websphere MQ. It needs some improvement playing with multi-platform message clients.

Valuable Features:

  • Price point and licensing are the most valuable features relative to our previous MQ solution (Websphere MQ).
  • Apache provides Docker images on the public registry for multiple versions of ActiveMQ. The value of the Apache-provided Docker image is that it spares developers from having to manually install ActiveMQ software. Using Docker, I can get a working ActiveMQ server up and running in minutes with zero knowledge of how the software is installed or what configuration files need to be tweaked, etc. Also, I can spin up an ActiveMQ farm of Docker containers within minutes if I want to test things like clustering, HA, etc. For something like concept testing or R&D, this is a fantastic way to save time and money.
  • Multi-protocol support: http://activemq.apache.org/protocols.html. As we began to explore integrating IoT solutions, ActiveMQ’s support of the MQTT protocol was very convenient!

Improvements to My Organization:

This product enabled development teams at my previous organization to R&D much quicker with JMS based applications, which basically comprised the entire middleware layer of the organization. Previously, we would get stuck waiting for license procurement for the IBM solution, which wasted project time and budget.

Room for Improvement:

Apache ActiveMQ needs some improvement playing with multi-platform message clients. It already plays really well with Java clients since it’s a JMS implementation, but it needs some improvement supporting clients written in other languages (like C#).

Use of Solution:

I have been using the solution for 18 months.

Stability Issues:

We have not encountered any stability issues.

Scalability Issues:

We have not encountered any scalability issues.

Technical Support:

For an open source solution, support options are actually very robust: http://activemq.apache.org/support.html

Previous Solutions:

We previously used WebSphere MQ and switched mainly due to licensing costs.

Initial Setup:

For us, initial setup was VERY easy since we were using the Apache-provided Docker image for ActiveMQ, which alleviates a lot of the traditional pains involved with installing new software.

Cost and Licensing Advice:

This solution is awesome from both perspectives.

Other Solutions Considered:

Before choosing this product, we did not evaluate other options.

Other Advice:

If possible, use the Docker image that Apache foundation builds!

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.


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