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Quarkus vs Spring Boot: Which Framework is Right for You

Quarkus vs Spring Boot: Which Framework is Right for You
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In modern application architecture and development, there has been a push from monolithic applications towards microservices. This has made microservices frameworks (micro-frameworks) very popular since they make it easier to prototype, design and build microservices applications. Spring Boot and Quarkus are both very popular microservices frameworks for building cloud native Java applications.

In this article, several features of Spring Boot and Quarkus will be discussed such as core capabilities, memory consumption, ease of development and performance to help developers decide which one to pick for building their application.

What is Quarkus?

Quarkus is a Kubernetes native Java framework for developing and delivering small artefacts and is an effective platform for serverless, cloud-native environments. Quarkus is similar to Spring Boot but with an additional promise of faster boot times, lower request times and offers developers a unified reactive and imperative programming model to address a broad range of distributed application architectures optimally.

Quarkus is designed to work with popular Java frameworks, libraries and environments such as Eclipse Microprofile, Spring, Kafka and Hibernate. Quarkus provides dependency injection and is an extensive framework to set-up, boot and integrate applications.

Quarkus Pros and Cons

Some of the pros and cons of Quarkus are listed below:

Pros:

  • Lots of simple documentation is available on the web since it has several communities to help developers.
  • The application boot time is much faster with Quarkus compared to other frameworks such as Spring Boot. This is because of the build-time metadata processing mechanism and the fact that standalone native images are built using Graal or Substrate VM. The fast boot time can help reduce the overall cost for building applications.
  • Quarkus provides faster hot reloads than Spring Boot since it can automatically detect changes made to Java and other resource/configuration files, and transparently re-compile and deploy the changes. This feature can also be used with Quarkus applications running in a remote environment.
  • It is built on top of well known enterprise standards such as JAX-RS.
  • Quarkus provides excellent up-to-date roadmaps. It carefully considers developer experience and how to improve it with every new release.

Cons:

  • The Graal VM installation is somewhat complicated. The OS-specific binaries and packages need to be verified, which is not beginner-friendly.
  • The community forum does not necessarily provide solutions to all the problems one may encounter when using Quarkus.

What is Spring Boot?

Spring Boot is an open-source Java framework for developing enterprise applications and microservices. It is used to build production-ready applications using features like auto-configurations and starters. Due to its extensive features, Spring Boot is a commonly chosen application framework for a microservices architecture.

Spring Boot Pros and Cons

Some pros and cons of Spring Boot are discussed below:

Pros:

  • Spring Boot has excellent documentation and outstanding community support. Almost every solution can be found in its community pages.
  • Due to extensive features like auto-configuration, starters and YAML support, it helps developers take care of most boilerplate code and reduce overall cost.
  • It provides faster I/O operations compared to Quarkus.
  • Spring Boot provides a template design pattern, allowing developers to include their dependencies in the pom.xml file.
  • It is more secure than Quarkus.

Cons:

  • Spring Boot has higher startup times compared to Quarkus.
  • It is largely dependent on starter modules and contains a lot of other dependencies, which affects overall performance.
  • Spring Boot projects usually require more memory than Quarkus.

Quarkus vs Spring Boot - Quick Comparison

Below is a table listing some of the main differences between Quarkus and Spring Boot:

Quarkus Spring Boot
Dependency Injection Uses CDI. Only a subset of CDI features are currently implemented. Uses robust Dependency Injection Container
Data persistence Uses familiar frameworks such as Hibernate - more innovative Based on Spring Data abstraction - more mature
Application boot time Fast boot times Slower boot times than Quarkus - generally slower than projects derived from Java Enterprise due to abstraction from top of Spring framework
Memory consumption Lower memory consumption on boot and under heavy load Higher memory consumption compared to Quarkus
Maturity New framework - documentation and community less active than Spring Boot Much more mature, open-source and feature-rich. Excellent documentation and community support

Conclusion

Both Quarkus and Spring Boot are extensive frameworks for developing and deploying Java based enterprise applications. So which one is right for your project?

Quarkus is a newer framework but more innovative than Spring Boot. It boasts fast application boot times, live coding features and an overall excellent developer experience. The main issue is less community support and the lack of beginner-friendly resources.

On the other hand, Spring Boot is mature, well-known and stable. It has extensive features, template design patterns and is highly secure. It also has excellent documentation and community support, which can help solve the majority of issues faced during development. The major cons of Spring Boot are poorer performance and higher memory consumption compared to Quarkus.

Therefore, choosing between Quarkus and Spring Boot for building your application will depend on the requirements of your project, technological preferences and developer skill level.

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