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Apache Mesos vs Nomad: What are the differences?


Apache Mesos and Nomad are two popular cluster management systems used for scheduling and executing tasks across a cluster of machines. While they serve similar purposes, there are key differences between the two that make them suitable for different use cases. This article aims to highlight the main differences between Apache Mesos and Nomad.

1. Scalability: Apache Mesos is known for its ability to handle large-scale computing clusters, making it suitable for organizations with big data processing needs. It can efficiently manage and allocate resources across thousands of machines, allowing for elastic scaling and high availability. On the other hand, Nomad is designed for smaller clusters and is more lightweight, making it easier to set up and manage in smaller environments.

2. Language Support: Mesos has a broader range of language support compared to Nomad. It provides native support for several programming languages, including Java, C++, Python, and Go, enabling developers to use their preferred language for writing and executing tasks. Nomad, while still offering support for popular languages, has a more limited language support compared to Mesos.

3. Containerization: Both Mesos and Nomad support containerization, enabling users to run tasks within containers for better isolation and resource management. However, Mesos has a more mature and feature-rich containerization ecosystem, with built-in support for Docker, Kubernetes, and other container technologies. Nomad, on the other hand, has its own lightweight container runtime called "Nomad client," which simplifies the deployment and management of containers.

4. Task Management: Mesos provides more advanced task management capabilities compared to Nomad. It offers advanced features like task grouping, task dependencies, and task health checks, allowing for more fine-grained control and monitoring of task execution. Nomad, while still offering basic task management functionalities, is more focused on simplicity and ease of use, providing a more streamlined task execution experience.

5. Plugin Ecosystem: Mesos has a rich ecosystem of plugins and frameworks, making it easy to integrate with various tools and technologies. It provides a wide range of built-in frameworks like Apache Spark, Apache Hadoop, and Apache Kafka, allowing users to easily deploy and manage these popular technologies. Nomad, while supporting plugins, has a more limited ecosystem compared to Mesos.

6. Community and Adoption: Mesos has a larger and more mature community compared to Nomad, with a significant number of contributors and users. This vibrant community ensures continuous development, improvement, and support for Mesos, making it a reliable choice for organizations. Nomad, while gaining popularity, still has a smaller community and user base, which may impact the availability of resources and support in certain cases.

In summary, Apache Mesos is a highly scalable and feature-rich cluster management system, making it suitable for large-scale environments with diverse requirements. Nomad, on the other hand, is more lightweight and focused on simplicity, making it easier to set up and manage in smaller environments.

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Pros of Apache Mesos
Pros of Nomad
  • 21
    Easy scaling
  • 6
    Web UI
  • 2
  • 1
    Elastic Distributed System
  • 1
  • 7
    Built in Consul integration
  • 6
    Easy setup
  • 4
    Bult-in Vault integration
  • 3
    Built-in federation support
  • 2
  • 2
    Autoscaling support
  • 1
    Bult-in Vault inegration
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
    Nice ACL
  • 1
    Managable by terraform
  • 1
    Open source
  • 1
    Multiple workload support
  • 1

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Cons of Apache Mesos
Cons of Nomad
  • 1
    Not for long term
  • 1
    Depends on Zookeeper
  • 3
    Easy to start with
  • 1
    HCL language for configuration, an unpopular DSL
  • 1
    Small comunity

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What is Apache Mesos?

Apache Mesos is a cluster manager that simplifies the complexity of running applications on a shared pool of servers.

What is Nomad?

Nomad is a cluster manager, designed for both long lived services and short lived batch processing workloads. Developers use a declarative job specification to submit work, and Nomad ensures constraints are satisfied and resource utilization is optimized by efficient task packing. Nomad supports all major operating systems and virtualized, containerized, or standalone applications.

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What are some alternatives to Apache Mesos and Nomad?
Mesosphere offers a layer of software that organizes your machines, VMs, and cloud instances and lets applications draw from a single pool of intelligently- and dynamically-allocated resources, increasing efficiency and reducing operational complexity.
OpenStack is a cloud operating system that controls large pools of compute, storage, and networking resources throughout a datacenter, all managed through a dashboard that gives administrators control while empowering their users to provision resources through a web interface.
Kubernetes is an open source orchestration system for Docker containers. It handles scheduling onto nodes in a compute cluster and actively manages workloads to ensure that their state matches the users declared intentions.
The Docker Platform is the industry-leading container platform for continuous, high-velocity innovation, enabling organizations to seamlessly build and share any application — from legacy to what comes next — and securely run them anywhere
Yarn caches every package it downloads so it never needs to again. It also parallelizes operations to maximize resource utilization so install times are faster than ever.
See all alternatives