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When do you use Apache Kafka instead of REST and vice versa?

pandaquests
Hi, °(p.q)° I'm pandaquests. I mainly write about software engineering and working in IT. pandaquests.de
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Discussion (2)

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Valentin Radu • Edited

You can’t really compare the two. Apache Kafka is a distributed streaming platform. In plainer words, a technology that helps you reliably pass information (data streams) between multiple actors. It’s mostly used as a smarter pubsub messaging queue, facilitating communication between microservices. You could compare it with RabbitMQ, ZeroMQ or even Redis (as a poor’s man choice)

REST is a protocol on top of HTTP that standardizes the way we’re synchronously (aka waiting for a response after each request) reading, writing and deleting remote resources.

However, if you're actually asking why and when you should use a messaging queue versus when you should simply call other services using REST in a microservices architecture, then I would advise to always use a messaging queue.
Here's an article I've wrote regarding this topic here on dev.to which touches this topic among other things related to microservices.

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Andy Lu

These are two very different things in my mind, and not something you make a decision between