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Apache Flink vs RabbitMQ: What are the differences?

What is Apache Flink? Fast and reliable large-scale data processing engine. Apache Flink is an open source system for fast and versatile data analytics in clusters. Flink supports batch and streaming analytics, in one system. Analytical programs can be written in concise and elegant APIs in Java and Scala.

What is RabbitMQ? A messaging broker - an intermediary for messaging. RabbitMQ gives your applications a common platform to send and receive messages, and your messages a safe place to live until received.

Apache Flink can be classified as a tool in the "Big Data Tools" category, while RabbitMQ is grouped under "Message Queue".

Some of the features offered by Apache Flink are:

  • Hybrid batch/streaming runtime that supports batch processing and data streaming programs.
  • Custom memory management to guarantee efficient, adaptive, and highly robust switching between in-memory and data processing out-of-core algorithms.
  • Flexible and expressive windowing semantics for data stream programs

On the other hand, RabbitMQ provides the following key features:

  • Robust messaging for applications
  • Easy to use
  • Runs on all major operating systems

"Unified batch and stream processing" is the primary reason why developers consider Apache Flink over the competitors, whereas "It's fast and it works with good metrics/monitoring" was stated as the key factor in picking RabbitMQ.

Apache Flink and RabbitMQ are both open source tools. It seems that Apache Flink with 9.11K GitHub stars and 4.86K forks on GitHub has more adoption than RabbitMQ with 5.88K GitHub stars and 1.73K GitHub forks.

reddit, MIT, and SendGrid are some of the popular companies that use RabbitMQ, whereas Apache Flink is used by Zalando, sovrn Holdings, and BetterCloud. RabbitMQ has a broader approval, being mentioned in 921 company stacks & 532 developers stacks; compared to Apache Flink, which is listed in 20 company stacks and 21 developer stacks.

What is Apache Flink?

Apache Flink is an open source system for fast and versatile data analytics in clusters. Flink supports batch and streaming analytics, in one system. Analytical programs can be written in concise and elegant APIs in Java and Scala.

What is RabbitMQ?

RabbitMQ gives your applications a common platform to send and receive messages, and your messages a safe place to live until received.
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Why do developers choose Apache Flink?
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    What are some alternatives to Apache Flink and RabbitMQ?
    Apache Spark
    Spark is a fast and general processing engine compatible with Hadoop data. It can run in Hadoop clusters through YARN or Spark's standalone mode, and it can process data in HDFS, HBase, Cassandra, Hive, and any Hadoop InputFormat. It is designed to perform both batch processing (similar to MapReduce) and new workloads like streaming, interactive queries, and machine learning.
    Apache Storm
    Apache Storm is a free and open source distributed realtime computation system. Storm makes it easy to reliably process unbounded streams of data, doing for realtime processing what Hadoop did for batch processing. Storm has many use cases: realtime analytics, online machine learning, continuous computation, distributed RPC, ETL, and more. Storm is fast: a benchmark clocked it at over a million tuples processed per second per node. It is scalable, fault-tolerant, guarantees your data will be processed, and is easy to set up and operate.
    Beam
    A distributed knowledge graph store. Knowledge graphs are suitable for modeling data that is highly interconnected by many types of relationships, like encyclopedic information about the world.
    Apache Flume
    It is a distributed, reliable, and available service for efficiently collecting, aggregating, and moving large amounts of log data. It has a simple and flexible architecture based on streaming data flows. It is robust and fault tolerant with tunable reliability mechanisms and many failover and recovery mechanisms. It uses a simple extensible data model that allows for online analytic application.
    Kafka
    Kafka is a distributed, partitioned, replicated commit log service. It provides the functionality of a messaging system, but with a unique design.
    See all alternatives
    Decisions about Apache Flink and RabbitMQ
    James Cunningham
    James Cunningham
    Operations Engineer at Sentry · | 18 upvotes · 113K views
    atSentrySentry
    RabbitMQ
    RabbitMQ
    Celery
    Celery
    #MessageQueue

    As Sentry runs throughout the day, there are about 50 different offline tasks that we execute—anything from “process this event, pretty please” to “send all of these cool people some emails.” There are some that we execute once a day and some that execute thousands per second.

    Managing this variety requires a reliably high-throughput message-passing technology. We use Celery's RabbitMQ implementation, and we stumbled upon a great feature called Federation that allows us to partition our task queue across any number of RabbitMQ servers and gives us the confidence that, if any single server gets backlogged, others will pitch in and distribute some of the backlogged tasks to their consumers.

    #MessageQueue

    See more
    RabbitMQ
    RabbitMQ
    Kafka
    Kafka

    The question for which Message Queue to use mentioned "availability, distributed, scalability, and monitoring". I don't think that this excludes many options already. I does not sound like you would take advantage of Kafka's strengths (replayability, based on an even sourcing architecture). You could pick one of the AMQP options.

    I would recommend the RabbitMQ message broker, which not only implements the AMQP standard 0.9.1 (it can support 1.x or other protocols as well) but has also several very useful extensions built in. It ticks the boxes you mentioned and on top you will get a very flexible system, that allows you to build the architecture, pick the options and trade-offs that suite your case best.

    For more information about RabbitMQ, please have a look at the linked markdown I assembled. The second half explains many configuration options. It also contains links to managed hosting and to libraries (though it is missing Python's - which should be Puka, I assume).

    See more
    Frédéric MARAND
    Frédéric MARAND
    Core Developer at OSInet · | 2 upvotes · 92.3K views
    atOSInetOSInet
    RabbitMQ
    RabbitMQ
    Beanstalkd
    Beanstalkd
    Kafka
    Kafka

    I used Kafka originally because it was mandated as part of the top-level IT requirements at a Fortune 500 client. What I found was that it was orders of magnitude more complex ...and powerful than my daily Beanstalkd , and far more flexible, resilient, and manageable than RabbitMQ.

    So for any case where utmost flexibility and resilience are part of the deal, I would use Kafka again. But due to the complexities involved, for any time where this level of scalability is not required, I would probably just use Beanstalkd for its simplicity.

    I tend to find RabbitMQ to be in an uncomfortable middle place between these two extremities.

    See more
    Michael Mota
    Michael Mota
    CEO & Founder at AlterEstate · | 4 upvotes · 12.1K views
    atAlterEstateAlterEstate
    Django
    Django
    RabbitMQ
    RabbitMQ
    Celery
    Celery

    Automations are what makes a CRM powerful. With Celery and RabbitMQ we've been able to make powerful automations that truly works for our clients. Such as for example, automatic daily reports, reminders for their activities, important notifications regarding their client activities and actions on the website and more.

    We use Celery basically for everything that needs to be scheduled for the future, and using RabbitMQ as our Queue-broker is amazing since it fully integrates with Django and Celery storing on our database results of the tasks done so we can see if anything fails immediately.

    See more
    Interest over time
    Reviews of Apache Flink and RabbitMQ
    Review ofRabbitMQRabbitMQ

    I developed one of the largest queue based medical results delivery systems in the world, 18,000+ queues and still growing over a decade later all using MQSeries, later called Websphere MQ. When I left that company I started using RabbitMQ after doing some research on free offerings.. it works brilliantly and is incredibly flexible from small scale single instance use to large scale multi-server - multi-site architectures.

    If you can think in queues then RabbitMQ should be a viable solution for integrating disparate systems.

    How developers use Apache Flink and RabbitMQ
    Avatar of Cloudify
    Cloudify uses RabbitMQRabbitMQ

    The poster child for scalable messaging systems, RabbitMQ has been used in countless large scale systems as the messaging backbone of any large cluster, and has proven itself time and again in many production settings.

    Avatar of Chris Saylor
    Chris Saylor uses RabbitMQRabbitMQ

    Rabbit acts as our coordinator for all actions that happen during game time. All worker containers connect to rabbit in order to receive game events and emit their own events when applicable.

    Avatar of Clarabridge Engage
    Clarabridge Engage uses RabbitMQRabbitMQ

    Used as central Message Broker; off-loading tasks to be executed asynchronous, used as communication tool between different microservices, used as tool to handle peaks in incoming data, etc.

    Avatar of Analytical Informatics
    Analytical Informatics uses RabbitMQRabbitMQ

    RabbitMQ is the enterprise message bus for our platform, providing infrastructure for managing our ETL queues, real-time event notifications for applications, and audit logging.

    Avatar of Packet
    Packet uses RabbitMQRabbitMQ

    RabbitMQ is an all purpose queuing service for our stack. We use it for user facing jobs as well as keeping track of behind the scenes jobs.

    Avatar of Coolfront Technologies
    Coolfront Technologies uses Apache FlinkApache Flink

    Used for analytics on streaming data.

    Avatar of rmetzger
    rmetzger uses Apache FlinkApache Flink

    Flink for stream data analytics

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