Airflow vs Kafka Manager: What are the differences?
Developers describe Airflow as "A platform to programmaticaly author, schedule and monitor data pipelines, by Airbnb". Use Airflow to author workflows as directed acyclic graphs (DAGs) of tasks. The Airflow scheduler executes your tasks on an array of workers while following the specified dependencies. Rich command lines utilities makes performing complex surgeries on DAGs a snap. The rich user interface makes it easy to visualize pipelines running in production, monitor progress and troubleshoot issues when needed. On the other hand, Kafka Manager is detailed as "A tool for managing Apache Kafka, developed by Yahoo". This interface makes it easier to identify topics which are unevenly distributed across the cluster or have partition leaders unevenly distributed across the cluster. It supports management of multiple clusters, preferred replica election, replica re-assignment, and topic creation. It is also great for getting a quick bird’s eye view of the cluster.
Airflow can be classified as a tool in the "Workflow Manager" category, while Kafka Manager is grouped under "Message Queue".
Some of the features offered by Airflow are:
- Dynamic: Airflow pipelines are configuration as code (Python), allowing for dynamic pipeline generation. This allows for writting code that instantiate pipelines dynamically.
- Extensible: Easily define your own operators, executors and extend the library so that it fits the level of abstraction that suits your environment.
- Elegant: Airflow pipelines are lean and explicit. Parameterizing your scripts is built in the core of Airflow using powerful Jinja templating engine.
On the other hand, Kafka Manager provides the following key features:
- Manage multiple clusters
- Easy inspection of cluster state (topics, brokers, replica distribution, partition distribution)
- Run preferred replica election
Airflow and Kafka Manager are both open source tools. It seems that Airflow with 12.7K GitHub stars and 4.62K forks on GitHub has more adoption than Kafka Manager with 7.45K GitHub stars and 1.82K GitHub forks.
Airbnb, 9GAG, and Square are some of the popular companies that use Airflow, whereas Kafka Manager is used by Yahoo!, IgnitionOne, and Ocado Technology. Airflow has a broader approval, being mentioned in 70 company stacks & 30 developers stacks; compared to Kafka Manager, which is listed in 8 company stacks and 4 developer stacks.