Spoilt for Choice: How to Choose the Right Enterprise Service Bus (ESB)?

I had a very interesting talk at OOP 2013 in Germany. OOP is a great conference for software architects and decision makers. The topic of my talk was “Spoilt for Choice: How to Choose the Right Enterprise Service Bus (ESB)”. Hereby, I want to share the slides with you…


Data exchanges in and between companies increase a lot. The number of applications which must be integrated increases, too. As solution, an Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) can be used in almost every integration project – no matter which technologies, transport protocols, data formats, or environments such as Java or .NET are used. All integration projects can be realized in a consistent way without redundant boilerplate code. However, an ESB offers many further features, such as business process management (BPM), master data management, business activity monitoring, or big data. Plenty of ESB products are on the market which differ a lot regarding concepts, programming models, tooling, and open source vs. proprietary. Really one is spoilt for choice.


This session shows and compares ESB alternatives and discusses their pros and cons. Besides, a recommendation will be given when to use just a lightweight framework for a specific problem such as systems integration or BPM instead of a (too) powerful ESB. You will also learn what an integration suite is, how it differs from an ESB, and when to use which alternative.


Here are the slides of my session:

Feel free to tell me your opinions in the comments. I appreciate every feedback!


Best regards,

Kai Wähner (Twitter: @KaiWaehner)

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14 Responses to “Spoilt for Choice: How to Choose the Right Enterprise Service Bus (ESB)?”

  1. Prasanth Says:

    Wonderful comparision,slides speaks a lot,i wish i was at the presentation.I was scratching the head reading a lot of blogs abt them individually.Thanks o lot for the information

  2. Murthy Says:

    Extremely informative presentation. Thanks a lot. Wondering if you have plans to post the demos as well. 
    You didn’t discuss much about Biztalk. Does that come under a ESB or an Integration Suite? 

  3. Kai Wähner Says:

    Thanks for your feedback.

    I will not post any demos. It was just very short product presentations, nothing special.

    Microsoft Biztalk is neither an ESB or an Integration Suite, see http://stackoverflow.com/questions/3355082/is-biztalk-an-esb. If you are looking for a Microsoft ESB, you should take a look at Azure Service Bus. I never used it… It does not look as powerful as ESBs from IBM or Oracle.

  4. Amalan Says:

    Excellent slides. Thanks for sharing.
    Our idea is to integrate Salesforce, SAP and other internal web service and Databases so as to extract data and do analysis on that. Since the volume of data could be of higher size we would like to have Kafka as messaging service during extraction.
    Will I be able to configure Kafka in Talend Open Studio for Big Data? If so, what would be the ContextFactory and server protocol? Please help.
    Apologize if irrelevant. Thanks.

  5. Kai Wähner Says:

    I have no experience with Kafka, but you could use Kafka in combination with Talend ESB, e.g. via a Camel connector: https://github.com/BreizhBeans/camel-kafka.
    I think you should use Talend Open Studio for ESB (i.e. Salesforce, SAP, SQL, etc.), not Talend Open Studio for Big Data (i.e. NoSQL and Hadoop).

  6. Amalan Says:

    Thanks Kai will take a chance with that option.
    Since we expect huge Volume of data (hundreds of GB data), we have an idea of moving the data to HDFS/HBase and perform analysis using MapReduce hence opted for TOS for Big Data. In that case is it advisable?

  7. Kai Wähner Says:

    yes, TOS for Big Data can be used for transforming data into HDFS / HBase and for manipulating with Pig / Hive / MapReduce.

  8. Sandiya Says:

    I have a question on the usage of Apache Camel for my scenario. My scenario is to pull out data from many data sources and display in information portal. Is there any other open source EAI tools to fullfil this integration or can this integration be achieved effectively through apache camel?

  9. Kai Wähner Says:

    Apache Camel is the right framework – if you want to write the code by yourself. You can also use an open source ESB which offers tooling, modeling and code generation on top of Apache Camel, e.g. Talend Open Studio for ESB.

  10. Sandiya Says:

    Thanks for the information Kai.

  11. chris haddad Says:

    Hi Kai,   I appreciate you displaying the WSO2 logo


  12. Ioannis Says:

    Excellent presentation, thank you !!!

  13. Rajkumar Says:

    How about Apache Service Mix or Red Hat Fuse ?

  14. Kai Wähner Says:

    Both are open open source ESBs based on Apache Camel.

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