Comparison: Apache Kafka VS RabbitMQ

We frequently get asked what the differences are between RabbitMQ and Apache Kafka. CloudAMQP is operating and providing support to the largest fleet of RabbitMQ clusters in the world, and our sister service CloudKarafka is first in the world with a free hosted Apache Kafka as Service plan, so we have some insights to share.

In the table below we've outlined the biggest differences and similarities between Apache Kafka and RabbitMQ.

RabbitMQ Apache Kafka
What it is? RabbitMQ is a solid, mature, general purpose message broker that supports several standardized protocols such as AMQP Apache Kafka is a message bus optimized for high-ingress data streams and replay
Primary use High-throughput and reliable background jobs, communication and integration within, and between applications. Build applications that process and re-process streamed data on disk
License Open Source: Mozilla Public License Open Source: Apache License 2.0
Written in Erlang Scala (JVM)
Client libraries Many mature libraries, including: Ruby, Python, Node.js, Clojure, Go, Java and C Many, including: Ruby, Python, Node.js and Java
Support for HA Yes Yes
Federated queues Yes No
Complex routing scenarios Yes No
Scaling strategies Mostly vertical Built from the ground up with horizontal scaling in mind
Hosted solution & Enterprise Support Available from CloudAMQP Available from CloudKarafka

Compare for yourself, get started with a free Kafka and a free RabbitMQ plan today

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Still unsure?

Contact us and we can guide you along the road, independent of if that road leads towards Apache Kafka, or RabbitMQ.