Click here to close now.

Welcome!

Adobe Flex Authors: Matthew Lobas, PR.com Newswire, Shelly Palmer, Kevin Benedict

Related Topics: Adobe Flex, Java

Adobe Flex: Article

Farata Systems Achieves Performance Breakthrough with Adobe BlazeDS

Thousands of Flex clients can concurrently communicate with Java using BlazeDS

Open sourcing of the highly compressed communication protocol AMF and server‐side Flex components play an important role in adoption of Flex by the enterprises. Live Cycle Data Services (LCDS) is an excellent solution for building scalable RIA, but it’s not cheap. For those who don’t have a budget for LCDS, Adobe has released BlazeDS, the open source implementation of AMF communication protocol.

The Theory
BlazeDS was offered as a free version of LCDS Flex remoting that also promised scaled down support of a modest number of concurrent users for data push.
But the enterprise clients wanted the best of both worlds: an inexpensive and scalable solution. The great part about LCDS and BlazeDS is that their code base is extendable and you can try to make the code do new things. The problem is that the base code is targeting only conventional Java Servlet container where BlazeDS is deployed, and performance/scalability of BlazeDS also depends on the number of concurrent connections supported by your server such as Tomcat, JBoss, WebSphere et al.

Farata Systems architects started experiments in this area when the prerelease of Jetty 7 became available. Jetty is a mature open source server that supports Java Servlet 3.0 specification (JSR 315).

BlazeDS runs in a servlet container, which maintains a thread pool. Each thread is given to a client request and is returned back to the reusable pool after the client is served. When the client uses so called long running connection that thread becomes locked by that client as it never finishes the request. So the number of the concurrent subscribers in BlazeDS depends on the number of threads a particular servlet container can hold.

While BlazeDS is preconfigured with just 10 simultaneous connections, it can be increased to several hundreds, and the actual number depends on the server's threading configuration, CPU and the size of its JVM heap memory. This number can also be affected by the number of messages processed by server in the unit of time and size of the messages.

Non-blocking I/O combined with Servlet 3.0 architectureallowsyou to write the code that is not tied to available server threads. The servlet container sends a request for execution and puts it in a suspended mode releasing the thread for other requests. When the result comes back, it resumes the processing of the request efficiently recycling a smaller number of threads. Because of that, the number of streaming connections can be increased to thousands.

The Test
The first goal was to create a module for BlazeDS to support the Servlet 3.0 with the messaging based on the AMF streaming. Thus test was set with Jetty - the first servlet container that implements Servlet 3.0 API. In less than six months this specification will be supported by most of the J2EE application servers. Additional endpoints ( components responsible for binding actual application services with servlet container ) were created based on BlazeDS open source implementation.

Tree small changes are required to add nio endpoints to a standard BlazeDS (or LCDS for that matter) application in the standard Jetty installation:

a) Add Farata’s nioblazeds.jar to Jetty’s lib folder

b) Modify the services-config.xml file of BlazeDS to change the standard thread-based end point for AMF streaming with Farata’s NioAmfEndpoint that supports Servlet 3.0 API.

c) Increase the parameter of the Jetty’s number of open file handlers based on the number of concurrent users requests you are planning to process.

The Trader Desktop, a sample application that comes with BlazeDS was successfully deployed under BlazeDS/Jetty and tested without any changes with enhanced endpoints.

The next step was to stress test this application using one of the commercial testing software suites that support AMF protocol. Farata engineers teamed up with Neotys, creator of a robust stress testing product called NeoLoad, that allows to emulate workload of tens of thousands of users hitting a server via both HTTP and AMF protocols.

Now you can watch a short screencast of the test that emulates 5000 users working with the Trader Desktop over the 5 minute period. The test starts with 200 users ramping up at the rate of 500 users per 10 seconds.

In this demo, the server side feed sends the messages about the latest stock prices to the Flex subscribers. After that, you’ll be monitoring this process using ds-console, yet another sample application that comes with
BlazeDS. First, the monitor will show just one client with a small number of messages, and the number of maximum streaming client is set to 65535.

Then you’ll see how easy it is with Neoload to load a large number of the users. The test uses 5 machines to emulate the load. The push count is the number of messages sent by the server. The test runs on a 8-cpu machine. Watch the number of allocated threads and the number of users – the number of threads is several times lower than the number of users at any given time. Please note that even when the number of users grows, the number of threads doesn’t. These processes are not expensive neither from the memory not from the CPU utilization perspective.

In this test the system was purposely restricted by introducing throttling in the Feed.java.

During this 5 minute test the server sent about 2.1 million messages. Since the first three minutes (180 seconds) of the test Neoload was ramping up the number of users until it reached 5000, count this time as a half or 90 seconds. Adding another two minutes brings the adjusted test time to 210 seconds or 10000 messages per second. This means that that each of 5000 users received 2 messages per second, which matches the throttling parameter that was set( in Feed.java we specified 400ms of sleep time between messages broadcast). Based on the server CPU and memory utilization we should have no problem supporting over 12000 users on this configuration as long as bandwidth and external load generators are added.

One of the machines used in this test was an 8-core MacPro for the server and four of the cores were shared with the VM emulating one of the client’s machine. There were also two 3Ghz desktops, one MacBook Pro and one 2Ghz Dell laptop - that’s the one that will work really hard trying to parse 300 messages per second. Actually, NeoLoad goes a little too hard on the client trying to even parse AMF messages on the machine running thousands of simulated clients.

The screencast of the stress test is located at http://myflex.org//demos/JettyBlazeDS/JettyBlazeDSloadTest.html .


Comparing with conventional and other technologies
Farata ran the same test with Apache Tomcat server using traditional thread-based I/O and standard BlazeDS long polling. Tomcat comes preconfigured with 250 threads. After increasing gradually this number, the same test can run for about 800 users, but pretty soon the system becomes unstable running out of threads and giving out of memory errors.

Tomcat also has experimental NIO implementation of servlet container named Comet. Farata has also created an endpoint adapter to utilize this feature of Jetty with BlazeDS. But while holding high promises of more efficient full duplex protocol the current Tomcat Comet implementation had some reliability issues.

Conclusion
The screencast should be treated as feasibility study and technical comment and not the benchmark of any sort as it still has a lot of room for improvement. More tests are required against the final release of Servlet 3 implementation for proper scalability benchmark for different servers/configurations.

Based on these results, you may consider using open source BlazeDS in the most demanding enterprise Flex applications. To be fair, we need to mention that LCDS is more than a data push, but if you are looking for a no-cost extensible solution that works in a standard Web environment with corporate firewalls and require session management, properly tuned BlazeDS becomes a good scalable solution for you next RIA.

More Stories By Flex News Desk

Flex News Desk provides the very latest news on the cross-platform Flex development framework for creating rich Internet applications, and on Adobe's AIR/Flex/Flash product combination.

Comments (4) View Comments

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


Most Recent Comments
Jedi 03/10/10 08:01:00 AM EST

Hello

I tried this setup. But I am getting this error:
I used jetty 6.1.22, 7.0.0, 7.0.1 and 8.0.0. But each time I did get this error:

java.lang.NoSuchMethodError: javax.servlet.http.HttpServletRequest.isInitial()Z
at com.farata.nioblaze.messaging.endpoints.BaseNioHttpEndpoint.serviceStreamingRequest(BaseNioHttpEndpoint.java:1170)

What is causing this?

Yakov Fain 10/27/08 01:05:21 PM EDT

At this point these are just experiments that we perform to accommodate the need of some of our clients.

This year we are not planning to open source it, but most likely will do it next year when more J2EE app servers will start implementing Servlets 3.0 spec. As far as I know, Resin will be next.

[email protected] 10/27/08 07:02:33 AM EDT

Where can i find nioblazeds.jar? Is it or will it be open source?

frankyin 10/26/08 09:54:55 PM EDT

Sounds very interesting.
Is there any plan for blazeds release to support Jetty7.0? And how about the nioblazeds.jar, when this feature can be included in the blazeds release.

Thanks
Frank

@ThingsExpo Stories
Containers and microservices have become topics of intense interest throughout the cloud developer and enterprise IT communities. Accordingly, attendees at the upcoming 16th Cloud Expo at the Javits Center in New York June 9-11 will find fresh new content in a new track called PaaS | Containers & Microservices Containers are not being considered for the first time by the cloud community, but a current era of re-consideration has pushed them to the top of the cloud agenda. With the launch of Docker's initial release in March of 2013, interest was revved up several notches. Then late last...
HP and Aruba Networks on Monday announced a definitive agreement for HP to acquire Aruba, a provider of next-generation network access solutions for the mobile enterprise, for $24.67 per share in cash. The equity value of the transaction is approximately $3.0 billion, and net of cash and debt approximately $2.7 billion. Both companies' boards of directors have approved the deal. "Enterprises are facing a mobile-first world and are looking for solutions that help them transition legacy investments to the new style of IT," said Meg Whitman, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of HP...
The explosion of connected devices / sensors is creating an ever-expanding set of new and valuable data. In parallel the emerging capability of Big Data technologies to store, access, analyze, and react to this data is producing changes in business models under the umbrella of the Internet of Things (IoT). In particular within the Insurance industry, IoT appears positioned to enable deep changes by altering relationships between insurers, distributors, and the insured. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Michael Sick, a Senior Manager and Big Data Architect within Ernst and Young's Financial Servi...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Open Data Centers (ODC), a carrier-neutral colocation provider, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Open Data Centers is a carrier-neutral data center operator in New Jersey and New York City offering alternative connectivity options for carriers, service providers and enterprise customers.
The explosion of connected devices / sensors is creating an ever-expanding set of new and valuable data. In parallel the emerging capability of Big Data technologies to store, access, analyze, and react to this data is producing changes in business models under the umbrella of the Internet of Things (IoT). In particular within the Insurance industry, IoT appears positioned to enable deep changes by altering relationships between insurers, distributors, and the insured. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Michael Sick, a Senior Manager and Big Data Architect within Ernst and Young's Financial Servi...
PubNub on Monday has announced that it is partnering with IBM to bring its sophisticated real-time data streaming and messaging capabilities to Bluemix, IBM’s cloud development platform. “Today’s app and connected devices require an always-on connection, but building a secure, scalable solution from the ground up is time consuming, resource intensive, and error-prone,” said Todd Greene, CEO of PubNub. “PubNub enables web, mobile and IoT developers building apps on IBM Bluemix to quickly add scalable realtime functionality with minimal effort and cost.”
Sensor-enabled things are becoming more commonplace, precursors to a larger and more complex framework that most consider the ultimate promise of the IoT: things connecting, interacting, sharing, storing, and over time perhaps learning and predicting based on habits, behaviors, location, preferences, purchases and more. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Tom Wesselman, Director of Communications Ecosystem Architecture at Plantronics, will examine the still nascent IoT as it is coalescing, including what it is today, what it might ultimately be, the role of wearable tech, and technology gaps stil...
In the consumer IoT, everything is new, and the IT world of bits and bytes holds sway. But industrial and commercial realms encompass operational technology (OT) that has been around for 25 or 50 years. This grittier, pre-IP, more hands-on world has much to gain from Industrial IoT (IIoT) applications and principles. But adding sensors and wireless connectivity won’t work in environments that demand unwavering reliability and performance. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ron Sege, CEO of Echelon, will discuss how as enterprise IT embraces other IoT-related technology trends, enterprises with i...
When it comes to the Internet of Things, hooking up will get you only so far. If you want customers to commit, you need to go beyond simply connecting products. You need to use the devices themselves to transform how you engage with every customer and how you manage the entire product lifecycle. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Sean Lorenz, Technical Product Manager for Xively at LogMeIn, will show how “product relationship management” can help you leverage your connected devices and the data they generate about customer usage and product performance to deliver extremely compelling and reliabl...
The Internet of Things (IoT) is causing data centers to become radically decentralized and atomized within a new paradigm known as “fog computing.” To support IoT applications, such as connected cars and smart grids, data centers' core functions will be decentralized out to the network's edges and endpoints (aka “fogs”). As this trend takes hold, Big Data analytics platforms will focus on high-volume log analysis (aka “logs”) and rely heavily on cognitive-computing algorithms (aka “cogs”) to make sense of it all.
With several hundred implementations of IoT-enabled solutions in the past 12 months alone, this session will focus on experience over the art of the possible. Many can only imagine the most advanced telematics platform ever deployed, supporting millions of customers, producing tens of thousands events or GBs per trip, and hundreds of TBs per month. With the ability to support a billion sensor events per second, over 30PB of warm data for analytics, and hundreds of PBs for an data analytics archive, in his session at @ThingsExpo, Jim Kaskade, Vice President and General Manager, Big Data & Ana...
One of the biggest impacts of the Internet of Things is and will continue to be on data; specifically data volume, management and usage. Companies are scrambling to adapt to this new and unpredictable data reality with legacy infrastructure that cannot handle the speed and volume of data. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Don DeLoach, CEO and president of Infobright, will discuss how companies need to rethink their data infrastructure to participate in the IoT, including: Data storage: Understanding the kinds of data: structured, unstructured, big/small? Analytics: What kinds and how responsiv...
Since 2008 and for the first time in history, more than half of humans live in urban areas, urging cities to become “smart.” Today, cities can leverage the wide availability of smartphones combined with new technologies such as Beacons or NFC to connect their urban furniture and environment to create citizen-first services that improve transportation, way-finding and information delivery. In her session at @ThingsExpo, Laetitia Gazel-Anthoine, CEO of Connecthings, will focus on successful use cases.
Sensor-enabled things are becoming more commonplace, precursors to a larger and more complex framework that most consider the ultimate promise of the IoT: things connecting, interacting, sharing, storing, and over time perhaps learning and predicting based on habits, behaviors, location, preferences, purchases and more. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Tom Wesselman, Director of Communications Ecosystem Architecture at Plantronics, will examine the still nascent IoT as it is coalescing, including what it is today, what it might ultimately be, the role of wearable tech, and technology gaps stil...
The true value of the Internet of Things (IoT) lies not just in the data, but through the services that protect the data, perform the analysis and present findings in a usable way. With many IoT elements rooted in traditional IT components, Big Data and IoT isn’t just a play for enterprise. In fact, the IoT presents SMBs with the prospect of launching entirely new activities and exploring innovative areas. CompTIA research identifies several areas where IoT is expected to have the greatest impact.
Wearable devices have come of age. The primary applications of wearables so far have been "the Quantified Self" or the tracking of one's fitness and health status. We propose the evolution of wearables into social and emotional communication devices. Our BE(tm) sensor uses light to visualize the skin conductance response. Our sensors are very inexpensive and can be massively distributed to audiences or groups of any size, in order to gauge reactions to performances, video, or any kind of presentation. In her session at @ThingsExpo, Jocelyn Scheirer, CEO & Founder of Bionolux, will discuss ho...
Roberto Medrano, Executive Vice President at SOA Software, had reached 30,000 page views on his home page - http://RobertoMedrano.SYS-CON.com/ - on the SYS-CON family of online magazines, which includes Cloud Computing Journal, Internet of Things Journal, Big Data Journal, and SOA World Magazine. He is a recognized executive in the information technology fields of SOA, internet security, governance, and compliance. He has extensive experience with both start-ups and large companies, having been involved at the beginning of four IT industries: EDA, Open Systems, Computer Security and now SOA.
The industrial software market has treated data with the mentality of “collect everything now, worry about how to use it later.” We now find ourselves buried in data, with the pervasive connectivity of the (Industrial) Internet of Things only piling on more numbers. There’s too much data and not enough information. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Bob Gates, Global Marketing Director, GE’s Intelligent Platforms business, to discuss how realizing the power of IoT, software developers are now focused on understanding how industrial data can create intelligence for industrial operations. Imagine ...
Operational Hadoop and the Lambda Architecture for Streaming Data Apache Hadoop is emerging as a distributed platform for handling large and fast incoming streams of data. Predictive maintenance, supply chain optimization, and Internet-of-Things analysis are examples where Hadoop provides the scalable storage, processing, and analytics platform to gain meaningful insights from granular data that is typically only valuable from a large-scale, aggregate view. One architecture useful for capturing and analyzing streaming data is the Lambda Architecture, representing a model of how to analyze rea...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Vitria Technology, Inc. will exhibit at SYS-CON’s @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Vitria will showcase the company’s new IoT Analytics Platform through live demonstrations at booth #330. Vitria’s IoT Analytics Platform, fully integrated and powered by an operational intelligence engine, enables customers to rapidly build and operationalize advanced analytics to deliver timely business outcomes for use cases across the industrial, enterprise, and consumer segments.