Apache Kafka Reviews

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Michael Silvi
Consultant
Senior Software Engineering Consultant at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
May 13 2017

What is most valuable?

Kafka, as compared with other messaging system options, is great for large scale message processing applications. It... more»

How has it helped my organization?

I used Kafka with a client to decouple applications with different availability profiles. Before using a... more»

What needs improvement?

Kafka requires non-trivial expertise with DevOps to deploy in production at scale. The organization needs to understand... more»

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing??

It is open source software.

Which other solutions did I evaluate??

No, we did you use a previous messaging system.

What other advice do I have??

Consider using a managed Kafka service, such as from Heroku. If messaging is not a central component of the business... more»
Sean Hickey
Real User
Solutions Architect at a consultancy with 1,001-5,000 employees
May 10 2017

What is most valuable?

Apache Kafka is actually a distributed commit log. That is different than most messaging and queuing systems before it.... more»

How has it helped my organization?

Kafka has a guaranteed delivery mechanism that is very easy to set up. When starting out with minimal hardware, it can... more»

What needs improvement?

The GUI tools for monitoring and support are still very basic and not very rich. There is no help in determining a... more»

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing??

When starting to look at a distributed message system, look for a cloud solution first. It is an easier entry point... more»

Which other solutions did I evaluate??

We used traditional message queues and file semaphores. There was a lot of overhead with asynchronous messages being... more»

What other advice do I have??

Be sure to define the use cases as best as possible at first. Kafka is very good, but it is complex to support. It can... more»
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Kevin Quon
Real User
Senior Technical Architect at a tech vendor with 51-200 employees
Nov 06 2017

What is most valuable?

I like the performance and reliability of Kafka. I needed a data streaming buffer that could handle thousands of messages per second with at... more»

How has it helped my organization?

Through its publisher-subscriber pattern, Kafka has allowed our applications to access and consume data at a real time pace.

What needs improvement?

As an open-source project, Kafka is still fairly young and has not yet built out the stability and features that other open-source projects have... more»

Which other solutions did I evaluate??

We did not have any other previous solutions. Our project was green field and a new type of project development.

What other advice do I have??

Kafka is open source and requires an administrator to maintain the servers.
FounderC32bc
Real User
Founder, CEO at a tech vendor with 1-10 employees
May 14 2017

What is most valuable?

The ability to partition data on Kafka is valuable. But Kafka needs support and management. It is better to have it... more»

How has it helped my organization?

We have used Kafka for streaming customer web clicks from live sessions to understand customer behavioral patterns.

What needs improvement?

The product is good, but it needs implementation and on-going support. The whole cloud engagement model has made the... more»

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing??

Licensing issues are not applicable. Apache licensing makes it simple with almost zero cost for the software itself.

Which other solutions did I evaluate??

We didn’t have a previous solution. We started with Kafka and then switched to Amazon Kinesis (PaaS for Kafka). I think... more»

What other advice do I have??

If you have a dedicated Kafka resource to implement and manage the services, then go for Apache Kafka. Otherwise, do... more»
HeadOfEn9a94
Real User
Head of Engineering
May 10 2017

What is most valuable?

* Scalability * Reliability * Ease of use

How has it helped my organization?

Kafka was at the base of our system architecture. The system was designed as an event based architecture. Almost all... more»

What needs improvement?

Stability of the API and the technical support could be improved. The Kafka API is changing quite radically with the... more»

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing??

I would not subscribe to the Confluent platform, but rather stay on the free open source version. The extra cost wasn't... more»

Which other solutions did I evaluate??

The previous solution was not really an equivalent one. I have been using several messaging systems, but Kafka fits us... more»

What other advice do I have??

The product is easy to use. However, to leverage its power, there is a need for good knowledge of event based... more»
Ivan Dyachkov
Real User
Team Lead at a financial services firm with 1,001-5,000 employees
May 24 2017

What is most valuable?

* Message Retention: Unlike regular message queues, messages stay in Kafka after clients consume them. A message can be... more»

How has it helped my organization?

It has become dead simple to connect different application and services, saving a lot of development hours.

What needs improvement?

The standard Kafka Java library, which is shipped with the product, is too complex for inexperienced users. At my... more»

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing??

There is no pricing and licensing.

Which other solutions did I evaluate??

We used RabbitMQ before. It does not scale well.

What other advice do I have??

Go ahead. It's a great product.
JavaDeve0c6d
Vendor
Java Developer at a media company with 10,001+ employees
Jan 05 2017

What is most valuable?

The most valuable features to me are replication, partitioning and easy integration with Apache Spark, which we use... more»

How has it helped my organization?

It will help us build a scalable platform. This will allow the company to provide better customer service.

What needs improvement?

It’s pretty easy to use for now. I haven’t had any difficulty or problems that I can complain about. Maybe they can add... more»

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing??

Licensing and pricing was handled by my management, so I don’t have much knowledge there.

Which other solutions did I evaluate??

I think performance-wise, the product is very good and fits in our use case. We used other distributed message queues,... more»

What other advice do I have??

Give it a try. It’s a valuable, high-performance, distributed processing tool.
kafkakid
Real User
Lead Engineer at a retailer with 10,001+ employees
Jan 24 2017

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,... more»

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... more»

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... more»

Which other solutions did I evaluate??

We switched from a previous solution mainly to reduce costs and to have a more scalable 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.
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What is Apache Kafka?

Apache Kafka is a distributed streaming platform, with the following capabilities:

  • It lets you publish and subscribe to streams of records. In this respect it is similar to a message queue or enterprise messaging system.
  • It lets you store streams of records in a fault-tolerant way.
  • It lets you process streams of records as they occur.

Apache Kafka gets used for two broad classes of application:

  • Building real-time streaming data pipelines that reliably get data between systems or applications.
  • Building real-time streaming applications that transform or react to the streams of data.
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