At Conduktor, our goal has always been to make Apache Kafka simple for everyone. Since our founding several years ago, we have always aimed to deliver the best user interface tool available. Conduktor's original desktop incarnation is now used by over 100'000 developers and 14'000 organizations. Now, we're ready to take the next step and transform the entire Kafka ecosystem, end-to-end.
The Conduktor Platform will lead that transformation. Built on top of the UI foundations that you already know and love, the Conduktor Platform is available as both a SaaS web app and as a Docker application, delivering one complete tool for Apache Kafka with many solutions.
The core Conduktor Console available in the Platform will have a significantly expanded free tier, with no time limit. You can also see it in action immediately with our demo environment, letting you play around with the Platform and with Kafka. Just head to https://www.conduktor.io/get-started/ to check it out.
The New Solutions of the Conduktor Platform
The arrival of the new Conduktor Platform means new capabilities and features that will improve your experience with Apache Kafka. I made this 20 minute walkthrough for everything in the Platform, but if you prefer to read everything is below.
The Conduktor Console
The Conduktor Console is a powerful UI for Apache Kafka, iterating over our previous product, Conduktor desktop. The Console equips Kafka users with much simpler and easier approaches to many tasks. We’ve divided the Console’s capabilities into three main areas:
First, there is the power of data exploration. Being able to clearly see which topics are being used and the status of your producers and consumers is vital. Newcomers to Kafka in particular can find it confusing. The Conduktor Console presents all of your topics, producers, consumers, and other Kafka essentials in an easy-to-understand, centralized, UI.
Conduktor does all the tricky stuff for you. You can get your standard operations done with a few clicks. This provides a repeatable and standardized deployment and development experience. No need to memorize the more than 200 API calls for Apache Kafka.
Inevitably, you’ll run into some issues with Kafka. Big or small, problems need to be fixed, but Kafka is complex and difficult to navigate. Conduktor troubleshooting surfaces errors for you rapidly, highlighting where the problem occurred and making it much easier to fix. And when you’ve already got the power of the Console’s Kafka operations, everything becomes much easier.
Testing Kafka applications has always been incredibly difficult to do. Not anymore.
Conduktor Testing can provide end-to-end testing in a visual interface that everyone can understand and collaborate on. Tests can be re-used again and again across teams, with every part of the tests shown.
Topic Analyzer works for every part of your team, giving you a Kafka expert as a service.
Newcomers get information to help them learn faster. More experienced users can uncover hidden aspects of Kafka that they never thought about. And the experts get to see where they need to focus their time and which teams need their help the most.
Conduktor has always been at the cutting edge of Apache Kafka, a relatively new and complicated technology. So, it was natural for the team to take on the challenge of Chaos Engineering, first conceptualized in 2011 and still rarely seen. Chaos Engineering attempts to simulate the chaos of the real world on applications, introducing failures and faults to see how your system holds up.
Chaos performs this task for your Kafka applications. Even if your development proceeds smoothly and tests go well, it's impossible to know if everything will hold up once it goes live, especially for Kafka which has its own unique foibles. Chaos gives you peace of mind for production, delivering more robust and resilient applications and letting you sleep soundly.
Everyone understands the need for monitoring of applications, but there are few solutions designed for Kafka. Building effective Kafka monitoring into existing systems will take loads of resources, and in the end, you may not even be monitoring the really important metrics.
Conduktor provides an opinionated, best-practices based monitoring solution that surfaces critical issues while downplaying false alerts. There is no complicated setup and it integrates easily into existing systems. It just works.
Alerting and Monitoring go hand-in-hand; you can’t have one without the other. So naturally, Conduktor offers both.
There were several challenges we sought to overcome with our alerts. First, our alerts make life easier for ops by making alerts simple and easy to understand. Second, our alerts make it clear which application is having trouble, showing you where problems occur and integrating with Slack. Real-time alerts that make sense are ready to go.
Topic As A Service
Despite the complexity, Kafka is a great service and once someone starts using it, it will inevitably spread around a team or organization. This is fine at first, but once you come to work together things can get complicated. All those different conventions and protocols won’t fit without a lot of work, and soon enough you spend more time maintaining integration architecture than actually using Kafka.
Topic As A Service lets you set the standard for how you work with Kafka for everyone, right from the start. Topic Creation becomes simple and even junior developers are able to work with Kafka without worry. Plus, topic actions are bound to identities, giving Ops a clear trail.
There hasn't been a solution to make Kafka compliant with all the regulations out there, until now. We can’t make GDPR go away, but we can make sure that Personal Identifiable Information is protected and your team members only see what they are supposed to. Data Masking hides sensitive data from the wrong people, keeping you in compliance and keeping your organization working on Kafka.
RBAC and SSO
Security is essential to your company. The Conduktor Platform offers Role-Based Access Control at the topic level, giving more granular control than any other solution. Together with Single Sign-On that supports LDAP and OpenID, it’s easy to meet the security requirements for your organization.
The majority of modern enterprises use Kafka for their infrastructure, making it important to keep track of changes. Unfortunately, Kafka remains something of a black box, preventing your Ops from understanding everything that occurs.
Conduktor Audit shows who exactly has access to what, who has done what, and when they did it. It works across clusters and fits seamlessly into the rest of the Conduktor Platform.
We are delighted to release the Conduktor Platform for our users and help make every part of Apache Kafka simple. Everything is ready to go, all you need to do is sign up and either run the Docker command or get started online. This is just the beginning of your data streaming journey.
For our Conduktor Desktop users, we will continue to offer this service and provide support where needed, but switching to the Platform will not entail any change to your current ways of working and this is where the most exciting features will be. Why not give it a try?