Apples and Oranges UK, Thursday, 6th January 2011
This is the first of six articles in the series Apples and Oranges comparing stormmq and Amazon SQS.
Superficially, stormmq seems to be like Amazon’s SQS, but they have very different performance characteristics.
Amazon SQS is great if you don’t need volume or latency.
Performance. One of those words that comes up time and again in IT, is misused as much as understood and seems to drive decisions a bit too much. In many ways, performance doesn’t matter – at least not to start with. Getting it right matters far more. In that respect, it doesn’t matter if you choose Amazon SQS over stormmq; getting your application out does. However, an understanding of what you’re trying to does.
Amazon SQS is ideal if you:‐
- need to send and process a few small messages a day;
- send data that isn’t covered by legal compliance issues;
- send data that can be occasionally lost;
- send data where retrieval and processing time isn’t critical;
- want to use a HTTP based API, is for use from inside a web page or java script client.
If your application can work under these requirements then stormmq would be a poor choice… because Amazon SQS will cost you only a few dollars a month.
However, when transit time is important (‘message latency’), then Amazon SQS starts to look a little different. Using Amazon SQS you can send a message in under a second if you are lucky but it often takes a few seconds. Then when you go to retrieve the message you need to use an incredibly inefficient HTTP poll that wastes bandwidth and CPU resource.
With stormmq we can turn a message around in under 14ms. However, it can seem faster, as we don’t use an HTTP connection for a new message and another one for an ack. Indeed, using a consumer, messages just arrive in the background, for processing. So if you’ve got a long lived app, and need to take action as soon as something arrives, we’re ideal. If you’ve got multiple consumers, we get to become far more efficient, automatically pushing messages where they’re needed.
In terms of performance, stormmq and Amazon SQS don’t compare.
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