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From Robbie Gemmell <robbie.gemm...@gmail.com>
Subject Re: Limiting the number of concurrent consumers across multiple queues
Date Mon, 20 Jan 2014 18:43:42 GMT
Hi Helen,

I think you and Gordon moight be talking about a different use of
selectors; yours being for the case where you try to pick off particular
messages from an existing backlog at a specific time, and Gordon's
suggestion being more around use of selectors on all your long-lived
consumers to consume the messages as they arrive and remove the need to
pick out specific messages later.

Picking individual messages off a queue with new consumers using a selector
is never likely to be that fast, because as you say it might have to
evaluate every message first to find a match (assuming there is one). On
the other hand, when using [a number of] long lived consumers aimed at
[collectively] consuming all the messages on the queue, the selectors are
simply evaluated during the regular process of attempting to deliver each
message to the available consumers. The overhead then moves from checking
every message specifically until it matches, which may be dependant on the
queue depth, to the regular competition between particular subscriptions
for accepting the messages as they are processed, which in some ways isnt.

I also presume that, as discussed on the other thread, you could also
currently be seeing a hit in performance due to using 'shared groups' with
unique'ish keys; more on this later.

Particular distributions of selectors could be used to ensure that at most
K consumers could ever process particular messages like X, and thus do so
at one time, but would additionally mean that if those particular consumers
were busy processing messages like Y which they can also consume, then it
could be possible for other consumers to sit idle because their selectors
indicate they cant process messages like X. It would need to be considered
as a balance, governed by whatever it is you are looking to achieve by
limiting the maximum number of concurrent consumers for a given type of

The same approach could technically be used across multiple queues, which
might also use groups (which is a little weird to write, since groups are
usually used to prevent concurrent delivery), but doing so would add an
additional element to the 'idle consumers' balancing problem, wherein at a
given time some sources might have messages of interest and others might

The above, and any other specific ideas people have, might all depend what
your messages, groups, and queues are actually like. E.g. are some higher
volume than others, are some more important than others, do you know what
the groups are ahead of time, etc etc.

If I am reading them correctly it seems like all of the original options in
this thread allow for a message to go round in circles between the various
queues, potentially forever. There also seems to be scope for interesting
ordering effects from re-enqueing messages. Given that ordering is another
key reason for using message grouping, what are your actual ordering

On a related-but-not note, see the other thread for further discussion
around improvements for queues with 'shared groups'.


On 17 January 2014 21:38, Helen Kwong <helenkwong@gmail.com> wrote:

> Hi Gordon,
> In the tests that we've run, the time it takes to dequeue messages using
> selectors seems to increase with the depth of the queue. Since the number
> of unprocessed messages can sometimes be quite high (e.g., >200000), if
> they are all on the same queue and we use selectors, the dequeue time will
> increase by a lot (e.g., 3-4 seconds if we're selecting the 200000th
> message), and the performance hit is probably too much for us. Is there a
> way to dequeue using selectors quickly from a high-depth queue?
> Helen
> On Fri, Jan 17, 2014 at 2:40 AM, Gordon Sim <gsim@redhat.com> wrote:
> > On 01/16/2014 07:20 PM, Helen Kwong wrote:
> >
> >> Hi Qpid users / experts,
> >>
> >> I need to limit the number of consumers concurrently processing messages
> >> considered to be in the same group, across multiple queues, and was
> >> wondering if anyone has ideas about how to do it. We’re using the Java
> >> broker and client, and have multiple queues, each with multiple
> listeners,
> >> each listener’s session listening to multiple queues. Some messages are
> >> associated with groups, and for a given group we want at most K
> listeners
> >> processing messages from the group at any given time. The messages are
> >> enqueued to multiple queues, and it’s possible for messages from the
> same
> >> group to be in different queues.
> >>
> >> If messages in the same group can go into only one queue, then the
> message
> >> groups feature will give us what we need (it’d work directly with K = 1
> >> and
> >> with K > 1 we can tweak the grouping value, e.g., hash it to one of 1
> to K
> >> and append the number to the grouping value). But since messages
> >> considered
> >> to be in the same group can be in different queues, the feature is not
> >> enough for our case.
> >>
> >
> > Instead of multiple queues, could you have one queue with different
> > selectors pulling subsets of the messages?
> >
> >
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