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Apache Kafka

24 Ratings

Apache Kafka

24 Ratings
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Score 8.6 out of 101

Microsoft BizTalk

26 Ratings
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Score 7.5 out of 101

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Likelihood to Recommend

Apache Kafka

Apache Kafka is extremely well suited in near real-time scenarios, high volume or multi-location projects. It can solve escalation problems for a fraction of the cost other solutions do and it has the flexibility of open source scenarios.
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Microsoft BizTalk

BizTalk is well suited as middleware. Where you wish to translate an input file into an output file and send it to some endpoint. In our case, we used it to convert and send files to SAP. In many ways, it very flexible, and you can do almost anything you want with it. In many ways, it's a better solution than your SAP XI or PI as middleware, since it's much less expensive, and allows you do interface with non-SAP systems.
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Pros

  • High volume/performance throughput environments
  • Low latency projects
  • Multiple consumers for the same data, reprocessing, long-lasting information
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  • BizTalk is great at mapping input files to output file (or input schemas to output schemas). It uses a pretty well designed mapping screen, and you drag arrows from one input field to the output field. You can also put all sorts of conditionals on the input to output fields mappings. That lets you change the output value based on more one input value, or if the input value has a certain value, or the absence of a value, you can set the output value to something else.
  • BizTalk is good at connecting to SAP, and allows you to download SAP Idoc schemas to use in Orchestrations which allow you to send and receive SAP Idocs.
  • BizTalk is pretty good at notifying you with email. In particular, you can have your Orchestrations send email based on a status. You can send email at the beginning, middle and end if you so desire. That is particularly useful developing and debugging orchestrations.
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Cons

  • Still a bit inmature, some clients have required recoding in the last few versions
  • New feaures coming very fast, several upgrades a year may be required
  • Not many commercial companies provide support
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  • BizTalk needs to be better at tracking down errors after the fact. Input files by default get deleted after processing successfully, unless you specifically specify that they don't. This can be an issue where you need to see what the input file contained, since you may have errors showing up in your target platform, in our case this was SAP.
  • BizTalk logging needs improved. It needs to be able to log the content of the messages it sends and receives. It would be good if the log had a link to the input and output files.
  • BizTalk needs to allow a simple way to preserve the input and output files for debugging purposes. A master setting on the orchestration would be helpful for this.
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Likelihood to Renew

Apache Kafka9.0
Based on 1 answer
Kafka is quickly becoming core product of the organization, indeed it is replacing older messaging systems. No better alternatives found yet
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Alternatives Considered

Kafka is faster and more scalable, also "free" as opensource (albeit we deploy using a commercial distribution). Infrastructure tends to be cheaper. On the other hand, projects must adapt to Kafka APIs that sometimes change and BAU increases until a major 1.x version comes out and adds stability to the product.
Juan Francisco Tavira profile photo
We did look at Jitterbit dataloader from Salesforce.com. Jitterbit seems like a pretty decent solution if you are doing a lot of uploads into Salesforce.com. However, its not nearly as flexible as Microsoft Biztalk is. Biztalk allows you to create any type of custom solution you wish, whereas Jitterbit is much more limited.
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Return on Investment

  • Easier deployment and horizontal scalability
  • Messaging cost reduction
  • Developments require adaptation and some paradigm shift to interoperate with Kafka
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  • If the Microsoft SQL Server database is used as well as other Microsoft applications, then BizTalk will be a good tool to add.
  • Many .NET developers are available in the market if there is a requirement to use it to develop a BizTalk Server rapidly.
  • If the organization is focused on open source tools or Java family, BizTalk may be not a good choice.
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Pricing Details

Apache Kafka

General
Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No
Additional Pricing Details

Microsoft BizTalk

General
Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No
Additional Pricing Details