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From Hellweek <>
Subject Re: ActiveMQ thoughts
Date Tue, 11 Dec 2007 16:06:48 GMT

Most of this testing was done with the 5.0 trunk.  thinking that it was a
problem with the 5.0 I tried on the 4.1 with even worse issues.

Last night and today I finaly am able to reproduce the issues I am seeing
and will be posting my test code.

While I can not currently use ActiveMQ in production I am still commited to
seeing these issues resolved.

What I have found is the CPP and C# clients dont play nice with each other. 
Sample code will follow later today that will allow you guys to recreate
most of the issues I see.

James.Strachan wrote:
> On 10/12/2007, Hellweek <> wrote:
>> Hello,
>> I know what I am about to post will upset a few people, however I think
>> it
>> is important that I document my experience with ActiveMQ in the hopes
>> that
>> others like me can have an understanding of the issues that you will
>> face.
>> A little history.
>> I am not new to Open Source projects, have been involved in them and have
>> sponsored the use of open source for many years.
>> I have been working with various message brokers for a few years.  My
>> first
>> experience was with TIBCO EMS.  Needless to say I was very impressed with
>> the stability and functionality of this fine EMS.  Next I had the
>> opportunity to work with Sonic EMS.  Again I was impressed with this
>> product
>> and was even happier with its low cost of ownership.
>> Over the last 6 weeks it has been my job to evaluate for our Trading firm
>> an
>> internal messaging system.  We wanted to use a EMS solution for
>> dissemination of pricing data to our in-house applications as well as
>> external clients of ours.  The messaging systems we are evaluating. 
>> EMS, MSMQ 3.0, SONIC EMS, ACTIVEMQ 4.1.1 or ActieMQ 5.0.
>> How did each product fair?
>> 1. Tibco EMS no issues with any of the stress tests and performance
>> tests.
>> 2. MSMQ don't even get me started with this POS.
>> 3. SONIC EMS no issues with any of the stress tests and performance
>> tests.
>> 4. ActiveMQ can not make it past any stress tests.  See issues below for
>> an
>> understanding of what we saw.
>> I have watched ActiveMQ for well over 2 years and 2 years ago the project
>> was so filled with issues that I knew I would never be able to recommend
>> it
>> to the owners of the company.  2 Years later and I was in the position of
>> trying ActiveMQ again and hoping that it would be stable.
>> I was very pleased to see that many of the issues I saw with ActiveMQ had
>> been resolved and was committed to giving ActiveMQ a chance at being our
>> EMS
>> solution for the future.  However, I can say after weeks of testing
>> ActiveMQ
>> Is still not ready for production use by myself and the firm I work for. 
>> If
>> you have high message throughput with high number of subscribers ActiveMQ
>> is
>> not well suited for your needs.
>> Lets take some time to examine the issues.
>> CPP ActiveMQ Client
>> 1. A fast producer with slow clients can and will take down the producer.
>> From what I have seen in testing a slow client can bring the producer
>> down
>> and in some cases can bring the broker down.  A miss-behaved producer or
>> client should never ever take the broker down.
>> 2. A Producer that producers more then 200 messages per sec locks up the
>> Broker when the Broker has only one client connected.  This one was the
>> biggest issue to accept and the one issue that caused us to say ActiveMQ
>> is
>> not ready for a production environment.  The most basic and simple task
>> of
>> the Message Broker is not working as expected and makes the ActiveMQ
>> unusable in a environment where peak message Generation can exceed 200
>> messages per second.  To be honest we never even get close to 100
>> messages
>> as it seems we die after 50 messages are fired in the same second.  The
>> only
>> time I am able to have producers producing without locking up or crashing
>> is
>> if I don't have any consumers listening.  Having a messaging system that
>> works without consumers is not a valid solution.
>> Again important to note.  As long as no consumers are connected I can
>> produce massive amounts of messages.  Once you connect a client massive
>> issues start to happen.
>> 3. Producers and consumers created on the same connection can cause
>> deadlocks.  This is a major issue and the main solution is to not do
>> this.
>> However, this is an unacceptable solution as it is my understanding this
>> is
>> an acceptable practice.
>> 4. A fast producer with a fast consumer leads to resource creep.  I don't
>> want to say it is a memory leak because it is not a leak it is just a
>> very
>> very slow release of the memory.  I should not have to put sleeps in a
>> program just to insure that memory gets released correctly.  In my test I
>> had to sleep for 20 MS between each message being sent to keep the
>> ActiveMQ
>> consumer running.
>> 5. Placing a breakpoint on the message listener on a consumer will cause
>> out
>> of memory errors in the producer.  Why me setting a breakpoint on a
>> consumer
>> can cause the producer to throw an exception is unacceptable and leads me
>> to
>> think that a slow consumer can and will take the broker and or producer
>> down.
>> 6. Very confusing to determine what version of ActiveMQ will work with
>> what
>> version of the client.  Example ActiveMQ 5.0 was released this week.
>> However, no new client was released and no information on when new client
>> will be released.  The CPP client just released a 2.1.3 version that
>> claims
>> it should be paired with 4.1.1 of the ActiveMQ broker.  Where is the CPP
>> client that is to work with the new features of 5.0?
>> With all the issues I have I will not be able to go to a production
>> environment with ActiveMQ, this is a shame as the people that have been
>> working this project are talented people and should be commended for the
>> work that has been done.
> Great feedback thanks!
> I'd be interested to know how ActiveMQ 5.0 fairs once its released (in
> the next couple of days hopefully) - quite a few of the issues you
> mention are specific things that were targeted in 5.0 (better flow
> control etc).
> -- 
> James
> -------
> Open Source Integration

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