Kafka Connect CLI Tutorial

Learn how to use Kafka Connect in standalone mode to write data into Apache Kafka.

Kafka Connect deserves its own section to be learned in-depth, but in this tutorial, we will learn how to leverage Kafka Connect connectors with connect-standalone to write data into Kafka.

In this tutorial, we will stream the changes of Wikipedia into a Kafka topic.

You can see the stream changes in Wikipedia here

What is Kafka Connect?

In order to get data into Apache Kafka, we have seen that we need to leverage Kafka producers. Over time, it has been noticed that many companies shared the same data source types (databases, systems, etc...) and so writing open-source standardized code could be helpful for the greater good. The same thinking goes for Kafka Consumers.

Kafka Connect is a tool that allows us to integrate popular systems with Kafka. It allows us to re-use existing components to source data into Kafka and sink data out from Kafka into other data stores.

Example of popular Kafka Connectors include:

  • Kafka Connect Source Connectors (producers): Databases (through the Debezium connector), JDBC, Couchbase, GoldenGate, SAP HANA, Blockchain, Cassandra, DynamoDB, FTP, IOT, MongoDB, MQTT, RethinkDB, Salesforce, Solr, SQS, Twitter, etc…

  • Kafka Connect Sink Connectors (consumers): S3, ElasticSearch, HDFS, JDBC, SAP HANA, DocumentDB, Cassandra, DynamoDB, HBase, MongoDB, Redis, Solr, Splunk, Twitter

How to use Kafka Connect in Standalone mode?

To use Kafka Connect in standalone mode, we need to provide the mandatory parameters:

  • Download a Kafka Connect connector, either from GitHub or Confluent Hub Confluent Hub

  • Create a configuration file for your connector

  • Use the CLI to start the connector

Example: Kafka Connect Standalone with Wikipedia data

Create the Kafka topic wikipedia.recentchange in Kafka with 3 partitions

1 --bootstrap-server localhost:9092 --topic wikipedia.recentchange --create --partitions 3 --replication-factor 1

As well as the topic dead letter queue wikipedia.dlq, for catching any errors

1 --bootstrap-server localhost:9092 --topic wikipedia.dlq --create --partitions 3 --replication-factor 1

Download the release JAR and configuration from here and unzip the archive on your computer at kafka_2.13-3.0.0/connectors/kafka-connect-sse:

1 2 3 4 5 ~/kafka_2.13-3.0.0/connectors  ls -R kafka-connect-sse ./kafka-connect-sse: kafka-connect-sse-1.0-jar-with-dependencies.jar

Edit the configuration file connectors/kafka-connect-sse/ with the following properties:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 name=sse-source-connector tasks.max=1 connector.class=com.github.cjmatta.kafka.connect.sse.ServerSentEventsSourceConnector topic=wikipedia.recentchange sse.uri= errors.tollerance=all

Look into your Kafka installation directory (where your bin and config folders are)

Edit the content of the config/ file

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 key.converter=org.apache.kafka.connect.json.JsonConverter value.converter=org.apache.kafka.connect.json.JsonConverter key.converter.schemas.enable=true value.converter.schemas.enable=true # EDIT BELOW IF NEEDED bootstrap.servers=localhost:9092 plugin.path=/Users/stephanemaarek/kafka_2.13-3.0.0/connectors

The last three lines are the most important to make everything work.

In particular, the plugin.path config: this is where you indicate the folder where you store your Kafka connectors you have downloaded before.

This must be an absolute path (not relative, and no shortcut with ~) to your connectors directory

If you fail this step, Kafka Connect will stop after starting it.

Next, we can start our Kafka Connect Standalone connector

1 ~/kafka_2.13-3.0.0/config/ ~/kafka_2.13-3.0.0/connectors/kafka-connect-sse/
Screenshot showing the process for starting your Kafka Connect Standalone Connector via CLI

And as we can see, the data is flowing into our wikipedia.recentchange topic:

1 --bootstrap-server localhost:9092 --topic wikipedia.recentchange
Screenshot showing the wikipedia data flowing into the Kafka Topic via the standalone Kafka Connect connector started via the CLI.

There is a lot more to explore in Kafka Connect, this part was meant as an introduction.

Hope you liked it!

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Conduktor & Kafka Connect

You've seen how to perform all these tasks using the CLI, but there's no need to keep using such a painful method.

Conduktor Platform can manage your Kafka Connect clusters and configure/start/stop connectors directly from there with just a single click. Try it now

Kafka Connect Overview in Conduktor Screenshot
Manage Kafka Connectors in Conduktor
Kafka Connect and creating a connector in Conduktor
Create and configure a Kafka Connector