blog by OSO

5 tips on designing event-driven architectures

Sion Smith 8 August 2023

Designing event-driven architectures is becoming increasingly popular as organisations strive to build scalable and resilient systems. But how do you ensure that your event-driven architecture is implemented correctly? At OSO we follow five key considerations when Designing event-driven architectures that work effectively.

Designing event-driven architectures: Scalable storage

When it comes to scaling storage in designing event-driven architectures, there are two main approaches: 

  1. Adding more brokers to your cluster or using storage tiers. If you are managing your own cluster, you will need to add brokers to scale storage. However, this can be a cumbersome task. On the other hand, if you are running in a cloud environment, a bigger cluster can automatically scale storage for you up to a certain capacity limit. 
  2. Choose to use storage tiers, which allow you to store data in different places such as brokers, cloud blob stores, or on-premise storage. This approach offers a more flexible and cost-effective solution for scaling storage.

Designing event-driven architectures: Choosing the right compute framework 

Choosing the right compute framework is crucial for building an effective event-driven architecture. Understand your use-case before Instead of building everything from scratch. If you are considering real-time stream processing,  it is recommended to leverage existing frameworks such as Kafka Streams or Apache Flink. These frameworks provide powerful tools for processing and analysing event streams in real-time. By using these frameworks, you can simplify your development process and take advantage of built-in features like fault tolerance, scalability, and state management.

Managing schemas

In an event-driven architecture, it is important to manage schemas effectively. Schemas define the structure and format of the data being exchanged between services. To ensure compatibility and consistency, it is recommended to use a schema registry. A schema registry allows you to store and manage schemas in a centralised location, making it easier to evolve and version your schemas over time. Whether you choose to use a schema registry provided by a managed service like Confluent Cloud or run it yourself, schema management is a critical aspect of building a robust event-driven architecture which can evolve as the adoption grows over time.

Monitor Event-Driven applications

Software development in distributed systems is extremely complex, when something goes wrong it is critical you have the information to hand in order to understand what has gone wrong. Traditional analytics may not be sufficient for organisations that require real-time insights on what is going wrong. By leveraging prometheus and grafana you can enable real-time dashboarding of how your architecture is operating.

Leveraging managed services

Managing the infrastructure and operations of an event-driven architecture can be complex and time-consuming. To simplify this process, it is recommended to leverage managed services whenever possible. Managed services like Confluent Cloud or MSK provide a fully managed and scalable platform for building event-driven architectures. By offloading the operational burden to a managed service, you can focus on building and delivering value to your customers.

Support is available 

Remember, don’t be afraid to experiment and iterate as you build your event-driven architecture. With the right tools and strategies in place, you can create a system that is scalable, reliable, and capable of handling complex workflows. So, embrace the power of events and start building your event-driven architecture today. 

If you are looking for support on how to design, build or operate any of the points outlined above, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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