Apache Kafka is an open-source event streaming platform. It ingests data from different sources and processes it on a real-time basis. It is used by thousands of companies in various scenarios such as creation of data pipelines, on-the-fly processing, and so on.
Kafka is generally deployed as a cluster of two or more instances across multiple servers. It can be deployed on bare-metal hardware, on virtual machines, or on containers using Docker or similar container platforms.
Apache Kafka provides three functionalities that can be used for event streaming:
Each instance of Kafka is interchangeably called Kafka server or Kafka broker.
The playground offers a Kafka cluster of two brokers and a Zookeeper that is used to maintain the status of the nodes, a list of topics in Kafka, and much more.