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NATS
NATS

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Socket.IO
Socket.IO

3.5K
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+ 1
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NATS vs Socket.IO: What are the differences?

NATS: Lightweight publish-subscribe & distributed queueing messaging system. Unlike traditional enterprise messaging systems, NATS has an always-on dial tone that does whatever it takes to remain available. This forms a great base for building modern, reliable, and scalable cloud and distributed systems; Socket.IO: Realtime application framework (Node.JS server). Socket.IO enables real-time bidirectional event-based communication. It works on every platform, browser or device, focusing equally on reliability and speed.

NATS and Socket.IO can be primarily classified as "Realtime Backend / API" tools.

"Fastest pub-sub system out there" is the top reason why over 13 developers like NATS, while over 186 developers mention "Real-time" as the leading cause for choosing Socket.IO.

Socket.IO is an open source tool with 46.7K GitHub stars and 8.53K GitHub forks. Here's a link to Socket.IO's open source repository on GitHub.

PedidosYa, Trello, and triGo GmbH are some of the popular companies that use Socket.IO, whereas NATS is used by Apcera, Workiva, and Bridgevine. Socket.IO has a broader approval, being mentioned in 555 company stacks & 385 developers stacks; compared to NATS, which is listed in 27 company stacks and 11 developer stacks.

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What is NATS?

Unlike traditional enterprise messaging systems, NATS has an always-on dial tone that does whatever it takes to remain available. This forms a great base for building modern, reliable, and scalable cloud and distributed systems.

What is Socket.IO?

It enables real-time bidirectional event-based communication. It works on every platform, browser or device, focusing equally on reliability and speed.
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      What are some alternatives to NATS and Socket.IO?
      Kafka
      Kafka is a distributed, partitioned, replicated commit log service. It provides the functionality of a messaging system, but with a unique design.
      Firebase
      Firebase is a cloud service designed to power real-time, collaborative applications. Simply add the Firebase library to your application to gain access to a shared data structure; any changes you make to that data are automatically synchronized with the Firebase cloud and with other clients within milliseconds.
      Pusher
      Pusher is the category leader in delightful APIs for app developers building communication and collaboration features.
      Google Cloud Pub/Sub
      Cloud Pub/Sub is a fully-managed real-time messaging service that allows you to send and receive messages between independent applications. You can leverage Cloud Pub/Sub’s flexibility to decouple systems and components hosted on Google Cloud Platform or elsewhere on the Internet.
      SignalR
      SignalR allows bi-directional communication between server and client. Servers can now push content to connected clients instantly as it becomes available. SignalR supports Web Sockets, and falls back to other compatible techniques for older browsers. SignalR includes APIs for connection management (for instance, connect and disconnect events), grouping connections, and authorization.
      See all alternatives
      Decisions about NATS and Socket.IO
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      Interest over time
      Reviews of NATS and Socket.IO
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      How developers use NATS and Socket.IO
      Avatar of Tony Manso
      Tony Manso uses Socket.IOSocket.IO

      I use Socket.IO because using HTTP requests for a real-time multiplayer game just blows! Even with websockets, I had to scrunch the data being transmitted down to a bare minimum, and do some cheap compression tricks so that I can send data in JSON format. Otherwise, I would have to resort to sending binary data. I may end up doing that anyway when the time comes that I need to scale.

      How do I use it? Each client opens a socket connection at startup. The server keeps track of these connections, and sends each client the visible portion of the Playfield repeatedly. The clients render this information, while sending requests and commands to the server (join,turn,fire,thrust,bomb,viewport change,etc.) in response to the player's actions. The server uses that to make adjustments to the player's ship on the Playfield.

      Avatar of Trello
      Trello uses Socket.IOSocket.IO

      Where we have browser support (recent Chrome, Firefox, and Safari), we make a WebSocket connection so that the server can push changes made by other people down to browsers listening on the appropriate channels. We use a modified version* of the Socket.io client and server libraries that allows us to keep many thousands of open WebSockets on each of our servers at very little cost in terms of CPU or memory usage. So when anything happens to a board you’re watching, that action is published to our server processes and propagated to your watching browser with very minimal latency, usually well under a second.

      Avatar of Kent Steiner
      Kent Steiner uses Socket.IOSocket.IO

      Socket.IO has a decent community footprint, including integrations with popular JS frameworks, and has fallbacks to maintain an app's services if websockets are not available for some reason. Websockets are an important factor in most of the web-facing apps I build, to provide asynchronous two-way communication between the app and whatever server or data source it is connected to.

      Avatar of Andrew Gatenby
      Andrew Gatenby uses Socket.IOSocket.IO

      Another one that we're not using, yet. But have realtime data updates within our applications and the central API will be a great bit of functionality that gives our clients more control and keep them informed of changes and updates in their stores, in real time.

      Avatar of AngeloR
      AngeloR uses Socket.IOSocket.IO

      Socket.io is used as our current multiplayer engine. The existing engine is very simplistic and only utilizes the websocket+http fallback transports and serves as a generic world/zone/screen grouping mechanism for displaying users to each other.

      Avatar of Apcera
      Apcera uses NATSNATS

      NATS is the backbone of Continuum.

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