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Red Hat Fuse Competitors and Alternatives

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Woo Joo Lee
Systems Architect at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Real User
Containerization adds to the flexibility and power of the solution

Pros and Cons

  • "The most valuable part of Fuse is the fact that it's based on Red Hat Apache Camel. It is really good that it already comes with so many different connectors. That makes it relatively easy to use. We use their XML definition to define the routes, making it really easy to define the routing."
  • "It might help if, in the documentation, there were a comments section or some kind of community input. I might read a page of documentation and not fully understand everything, or it might not quite answer the question I had. If there were a section associated with it where people could discuss the same topic, that might be helpful because somebody else might have already asked the question that I had."

What is our primary use case?

Our company provides IT services. Some of the projects that we do are integration projects and we use Fuse to help customers solve their integration problems.

In our latest project, we integrated one legacy system with a new system they were implementing. We used Red Hat Fuse and AMQ to solve the integration situation. One system did not have a modern API, and the only thing exposed as integration points were database tables. The other system had more options, but to connect it to the database interface, we decided to implement a Fuse application to translate things and make it reusable and modular. 

It's deployed on-prem, as a stand-alone, on Red Hat Enterprise Linux, with an AMQ master sight configuration and two clustered Fuse nodes.

How has it helped my organization?

Because it was relatively easy to get set up, it saved us a lot of time in building the solution. 

In terms of functionality, it's influencing a key piece of integration, one that actually allows our company to operate. It makes possible a core part of our business.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable part of Fuse is the fact that it's based on Red Hat Apache Camel. It is really good that it already comes with so many different connectors. That makes it relatively easy to use. We use their XML definition to define the routes, making it really easy to define the routing.

Because Apache Camel is widely used, it was quite easy to find examples for use cases that are similar to ours. We were able to get it set up and do a proof of concept quite easily, without relying on the external consultants too much. The fact that we could download it with the developer license and set up a test environment and try things out, before we committed to purchasing an actual subscription, was also very helpful in getting us set up quickly. 

What needs improvement?

Some of the official Red Hat documentation could be improved a little bit. It was a little difficult to find exactly what I was looking for. I was eventually able to find it. It's there, but it was hard to find. 

It might help if, in the documentation, there were a comments section or some kind of community input. I might read a page of documentation and not fully understand everything, or it might not quite answer the question I had. If there were a section associated with it where people could discuss the same topic, that might be helpful because somebody else might have already asked the question that I had.

We deployed Fuse on JBoss EAP and the user interface could be improved with some type of dashboarding. That would be useful because, when we got it set up, there wasn't anything that we could readily just turn on to monitor its performance. It turned out there actually was, and I eventually found it, but it wasn't quite handy. It would have been really great if, as part of deploying Fuse on JBoss EAP, we could easily get to measuring performance and have the ability to monitor things, without having to dive into configuration or to deploy other stuff.

For how long have I used the solution?

I used it from 2018 through to April of this year. I will likely start using it again in the next month or two, as part of my consulting work for the IT services company I work for. We use Red Hat Fuse with Red Hat AMQ.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It's been very stable. Since we put it into production, there really haven't been any issues. It has been reliable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It's very scalable. We haven't had to utilize its full potential. While I was using it, I found out about the possibility of containerizing it. That seems great. In the future, I think I'll continue to use it in other projects. For our use case, we didn't need to employ all of that, partly because the organization that we were doing the project for wasn't ready, and their infrastructure wasn't ready. But I'd rate it as very scalable.

How are customer service and support?

I believe we used Red Hat technical support once because we were using the partner. My impression at the time was that it was a good experience, but the response was not as fast as I would've liked.

How would you rate customer service and support?

Positive

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

This is the first integration solution we have used.

How was the initial setup?

Once I understood how to do it, it was straightforward. You just download EAP, start it up, download Fuse, build an application, and deploy onto it. Those things are quite easy to do, but there were some fundamental knowledge gaps that I had to close, before I could do that. When I first got started using Red Hat Fuse, I hadn't been really deep into the open source Java ecosystem. I was familiar with bits of it, but there were some things it seems they assume you know, things that help you set it up easily. 

It's hard to measure exactly what our deployment time was because we've made a bunch of improvements along the way. But from the time we decided to use it until we got a proof of concept set up—a minimum viable product—was about a month.

It would have been helpful if there were a prerequisite list, along the lines of: in order to use this, you need to know these concepts. Once I got the prerequisites, it took me a month to download it, find some examples, do a little tweaking, build a simple application, put it up, and do a basic test.

What about the implementation team?

We did engage a Red Hat partner a little bit, Section6, to refine the design by designing some of the finer parts of it.

Our experience with Section6 was mostly good. Some of them were ex-Red Hat employees. They were professional. They knew what they were talking about, although there were varying levels of experience within their team. Some of them were really great and some of them were not as great. But overall, the experience was good.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We looked into MuleSoft a little bit. After doing some Googling and comparisons, the main standouts were MuleSoft and Red Hat Fuse.

One of the big factors in our decision to go with Fuse was the licensing cost. It was cheaper to go with Fuse. And from a developer and system architecture point of view, I liked Red Hat better because it is open source. There were a lot of examples online, and there was a wider ecosystem. I could pick and choose among all of the possibilities and the different projects that Red Hat was managing. I liked that part of it. An aspect of that had to do with containerization. I could see that, in the future, it would be really easy to put things together and evolve the solution later, if necessary.

What other advice do I have?

My advice to somebody looking into this product would be: Be prepared to do a lot of reading. But the tool is quite flexible and quite powerful.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

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