Kafka as source for Flume

We are re-platforming a monolithic application into microservices, on the transition phase the services will be added incrementally and the monolithic app will be retired once all services are in place. To achieve the goal, we had to set up a real-time event processing model for syncing the data store.

Kafka and Flume were the options proposed on architecture council discussions. Kafka is a general purpose pub-sub messaging system which offers strong durability, horizontal scalability and fault-tolerance. While Flume is a distributed system for collecting, aggregating and transfer large data from different sources to a centralized data store. Flume is more tightly integrated with the Hadoop ecosystem whereas Kafka is not, so the obvious choice was Kafka.

While doing POC on Kafka I set out to try Flume as both have overlapping features. Wanted something simple to get hands dirty on Flume, so decided to use Kafka as source of Flume, the sink will be a logger.

1. Create a Flume configuration file that uses Kafka source to send data to logger sink


flume1.sources.kafka-source-1.type = org.apache.flume.source.kafka.KafkaSource
flume1.sources.kafka-source-1.zookeeperConnect = localhost:2181
flume1.sources.kafka-source-1.topic = kafkalog
flume1.sources.kafka-source-1.batchSize = 100

flume1.channels.memory-channel-1.type = memory

flume1.sinks.log-sink-1.type = logger

flume1.sources.kafka-source-1.channels = memory-channel-1
flume1.sinks.log-sink-1.channels = memory-channel-1

2. Create a topic to stream data to logger

bin/kafka-topics.sh --create --zookeeper localhost:2181 --replication-factor 1 --partitions 1 --topic kafkalog

3. Start Kafka server

bin/kafka-server-start.sh config/server.properties

4. Run the Flume agent

flume-ng agent --conf /usr/local/flume/conf --conf-file /usr/local/flume/conf/kafkalog.properties --name flume1 -Dflume.root.logger=INFO,console

5. Push message to Kafka topic using producer

bin/kafka-console-producer.sh --broker-list localhost:9092 --topic kafkalog