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Revision as of 13:50, 3 September 2013 by Kgriffs (talk | contribs) (Summary: Added mission statement)

Project Codename


Mis sion

To produce an OpenStack message queueing API and service that affords a variety of distributed application messaging patterns in an efficient, scalable and highly-available manner and to create and maintain associated Python libraries and documentation.


Marconi is a messaging and notifications service for the OpenStack product portfolio, supporting both producer-consumer and publish-subscribe modes. Marconi is designed to perform and scale in a multi-tenant environment.

Detailed Description

In order to support more complex web applications running on OpenStack, a messaging service is needed. To fill this need, the Marconi project was proposed at the Grizzly design summit. Requirements were discussed with the community and used to form the basis for the project's charter. Implementation began in February 2013, and we have been fortunate to receive regular, major contributions from Red Hat and Rackspace since that time.

Marconi's overarching goal is to provide web-scale, highly-available message queues to web applications that run on OpenStack. Marconi runs on Nova servers, behind OpenStack load balancers and Keystone authentication middleware. The Marconi implementation makes use of Oslo, and follows the standard OpenStack hacking guidelines.

Marconi provides an interface for creating queues, enqueuing messages, and later claiming those messages for processing. It also provides an interface to clients for listing messages without needing to claim them (ala RSS and Atom), in order to support pub-sub and passive auditing of producer-consumer workflows. The service guarantees first in, first out (FIFO) order for single producer models, best-effort ordering otherwise.

The Marconi architecture is pluggable in terms of both transport and storage. Reference drivers for HTTP (WSGI), SQLAlchemy, and MongoDB will be provided in the initial release, along with a SQLite driver to facilitate development and testing. Other transport and storage drivers have been proposed, and are currently under discussion. Marconi deployments will support HA, and will be able to scale horizontally in the transport and storage layers to enable large deployments. A routing proxy and migration service is also under development, to provide further horizontal scaling across multiple independent Marconi partitions, for use in extremely large deployments.

The Marconi v1.0 API defines the following operations:


Get JSON home document
Check node health


Create a queue
List queues
Set queue metadata
Get queue metadata
Get queue stats
Delete a queue


Post one or more messages
List messages
Get a message
Delete a message
Get multiple messages
Delete multiple messages


Claim messages
Query a claim
Update a claim
Release a claim

Basic roadmap for the project

Version 1.0

  • REST API for queue/messages/claim management
  • FIFO guaranteed for single producer, best-effort otherwise
  • Guaranteed once-and-only-once delivery (with some caveats, see also Marconi/guarantees)
  • (Relatively) simple to achieve HA and durability
  • Multi-tenant
  • Keystone-based authentication
  • Python bindings
  • Error handling, edge cases
  • Oslo-based logging, configuration, etc.
  • Ruggedization/packaging for production deployments
  • Operator Documentation
  • Performance Tests & Tuning
  • Unit & Functional Tests

Future Release Plans

  • Non-Python language bindings
  • Add Functional, Load & Security tests to a CI pipeline
  • Message Compression
  • WebSocket and ZMQ transport drivers
  • SQLAlchemy storage driver
  • Kombu Integration
  • Message tags
  • Exploration of a domain-specific storage backend

Location of project source code

Server: https://github.com/stackforge/marconi
Client: https://github.com/stackforge/python-marconiclient

Programming language, required technology dependencies

Language: Python

Dependencies: Falcon, MongoDB, Oslo, Stevedore

Is project currently open sourced? What license?

Yes, under the Apache 2.0 license.

Level of maturity of software and team

The Marconi project has been under active development at both Rackspace and Red Hat since January of 2013 and recently reached a level of maturity that will support production work loads. The current code base contains numerous unit and functional tests. A comprehensive load and security test suite is currently under development. The Marconi team is ramping up on client library development, and plans to have Python bindings ready to coincide with v1.0 of the service.

Proposed project technical lead and qualifications

Kurt Griffiths is a Principal Architect at Rackspace Hosting, currently working with other technical leaders inside and outside the company on cloud architecture, strategy and evangelism. Kurt focuses on web service APIs, agents, cryptography, and performance. He works with other senior technologists to provide day-to-day and long-term technical guidance for products developed at Rackspace.

Other project developers and qualifications

Active Code Contributors

In addition to Kurt Griffiths:

  • Alejandro Cabrera is a software developer at Rackspace. His expertise include: Python, Linux, open-source, community building, distributed systems, and automation.
  • Allan Metts is the Director of Engineering for the Rackspace Atlanta office, which is the site responsible for the company's Cloud Backup, Jungle Disk, and Cloud Queuing products. Prior to Rackspace, Allan led the development of several large-scale systems in the telecommunications, transportation, and financial sectors. He specializes in distributed systems that crunch large amounts of data at high rates of speed.
  • Flavio Percoco is a Software Engineer at Red Hat. Active in the OpenStack community, Flavio has contributed and reviewed code on OpenStack’s Block Storage, Image, Oslo, and Stable Maintainers teams.
  • Malini Kamalambal is a Quality Engineer at Rackspace, with over 11 years of industry experience. In addition to test planning and functional execution, Malini has history in software development.
  • Oz Akan is a Cloud Engineering Manager at Rackspace and has been working in technology since 1997. Oz is an expert in database management, having spent time working with MySQL, Oracle, and Mongo DB.
  • Zhihao Yuan is a Software Developer at Rackspace, and a member of the Technical Leadership Team. Zihihao has experience with FreeBSD, C++, Python, and more.

Previous Code Contributors

  • Bryan Davidson is a Software Developer at Rackspace. He has over 5 years of industry experience building web-scale applications.
  • Jamie Painter is a Software Manager at Rackspace, as well as a member of Rackspace's Technical Leadership Team. He specializes in architecture/design, C/C++, Python, Linux, shell scripting, encryption and security.
  • Victoria Martínez de la Cruz is a Licenciate in Computer Science student and one of the interns of GNOME OPW for OpenStack.

API Design Contributors (no code submitted)

  • Hong Yuan is a Senior Software Engineer at HP, working on projects such as Messaging as a Service and Database as a Service. Hong specializes in software architecture and development with high scalability, high availability, and low latency.
  • John Hopper is a Software Develop at Rackspace and has over 11 years of industry experience. John specializes in tackling large, complex models and prototyping solutions.
  • Travis Reeder is the a Co-Founder and CTO at Iron.io. Travis specializes in building highly scalable applications, Go (golang), Ruby on Rails, and Java.

Infrastructure requirements (testing, etc)

Currently on StackForge using Gerrit and Jenkins to run the unit test suite and flake8. A QA cluster is nearing completion which will facilitate automated load and security testing, with infrastructure donated by Rackspace. The QA cluster will serve as a reference configuration for operators wishing to deploy a Marconi cluster. No additional infrastructure requirements are expected.

Have all current contributors agreed to the OpenStack CLA?


Related Links

Project Home: https://launchpad.net/marconi
API Blueprint: https://wiki.openstack.org/wiki/Marconi/specs/api/v1


Pending Incubation