Alex's Slip-box

These are my org-mode notes in sort of Zettelkasten style

A Survey of Kafka

:ID: 355A2592-CBDA-4B02-BC9B-9F75F3867C62

# What is it?

See also

It’s a distributed event streaming platform.

# General use case

Share data (ie, events, messages, etc) between applications. Producers publish messages and consumers read those messages. See introduction for more details and more specific use cases.

object "Source Applications" as Source
object Producers
object "Kafka Cluster" as Cluster {
object Zookeeper
object Consumers
object "Target Applications" as Target
Source -r-|> Producers
Producers -r-|> Cluster
Cluster -r-|> Consumers
Cluster -d-|> Zookeeper
Consumers -r-|> Target

A good way to learn how Kafka works is to spin it up locally and use the CLI to create topics, publish and consume messages. See CLI usages below.

See Kafka docker for a super quick way to get up and running locally.

# Kafka CLI

# kafka-topics

# Adding a topic

kafka-topics --bootstrap-server localhost:9092 --topic first_topic --create --partitions 3 --replication-factor 1
  • --replication-factor: how many broker nodes should partitions be replicated to.

Must be <= number of brokers in the cluster.

  • partitions are distributed across brokers. One consumer reads from a partition. So, the more partitions, the more consumers; hence horizontal scaling.

# Listing topics

kafka-topics --bootstrap-server localhost:9092 --list

# Describe a topic

Provides partition, leader, Isr, and replicas info

kafka-topics --bootstrap-server localhost:9092 --topic first_topic --describe

# Delete a topic

kafka-topics --bootstrap-server localhost:9092 --topic second_topic --delete

# kafka-console-producer

Create messages. This opens a prompt where you can add one or more messages. Press enter key to add the next message. C-c to exit prompt.

kafka-console-producer --broker-list --topic first_topic --producer-property acks=all
  • producer-property is optional and can be used to add other properties. In this example, setting the acks property.
  • You can specify a topic that doesn’t exist and it will be created. You’ll get an error the first time a message is posted, but it will recover and succeed after the topic is created and a leader is selected.

# kafka-console-consumer

Starts a consumer of messages created by a producer

kafka-console-consumer --bootstrap-server --topic first_topic
  • This starts the consumer listening for new messages.
  • Add --from-beginning to consume all the messages and continue to listen for new ones.

# Groups (--group flag)

  • Consumers are should usually be grouped by an arbitrary ID.
  • Messages are consumed by group members from specific partitions (ie, a single consumer in a group doesn’t read all the messages unless it is the only consumer).
  • Messages are read once by consumers in a group (ie, consumer group offsets is what keeps track of messages already consumed by a group)
  • When a grouped consumer is started, unread messages created before it was started are consumed.

    kafka-console-consumer --bootstrap-server --topic first_topic --group app-foo

# kafka-consumer-groups

Use this to list, describe, delete groups. Also reset consumer group offsets

# List groups

kafka-consumer-groups --bootstrap-server localhost:9092 --list

# Describe a group

This will give you info about where the consumers are in consuming messages (ie consumer offsets, lag, etc)

kafka-consumer-groups --bootstrap-server localhost:9092 --describe --group app-foo

# Reset offsets

There’s a bunch of different options for where to reset the offset to. Here’s one example using --to-earliest.

kafka-consumer-groups --bootstrap-server localhost:9092 --group app-foo --topic first_topic --reset-offsets --to-earliest --execute

# Ruby

See also this Zendesk post for a nice breakdown of the differences between these libraries.

# Libraries

# Framworks

# Resources