Apache Kafka Review

We use the product for high-scale distributed messaging. Multiple consumers can sync with it and fetch messages.


What is most valuable?

We use the product for high-scale distributed messaging. The processing capability of the product is enormous. Being a distributed platform, multiple consumers can sync with it and fetch messages.

Another great feature is the consumer offset log which tells you where the consumer left and where he needs to start again. Consumers aren’t required to code and put extra effort to maintain the offset.

How has it helped my organization?

We were using another commercial messaging engine, which was not scalable unless you paid more. Each hub that we provisioned was expensive. This solution is open source, which is much easier to use and doesn’t cost us anything.

What needs improvement?

This product guarantees at-least-once delivery. We have asked JIRA to provide features such as at-most-once delivery to remove duplicate message consumption.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We haven’t faced any issues so far. Some of the clusters churn millions of records per seconds with ease.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have clustered environments and we haven’t seen any scalability issues. We can provision a new node in as little as 45 minutes.

How is customer service and technical support?

It is open source, so support is in our own hands. The only option is to make a new feature request through JIRA. When multiple people in the community make a request for similar feature, it gets priority.

Which solutions did we use previously?

We switched from a previous solution mainly to reduce costs and to have a more scalable solution.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was a bit complex in terms of how to manage it across data centers. But once it was setup, we never faced issues.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We evaluated multiple options, such as ActiveMQ and RabbitMQ. We leaned towards this solution.

What other advice do I have?

I would advise others to start with non-SSL implementations and try to do PoCs. Afterwards, they should move towards more secure features.

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