sksamuel / pulsar4s

Idiomatic, typesafe, and reactive Scala client for Apache Pulsar


pulsar4s - Apache Pulsar Scala Client

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pulsar4s is a concise, idiomatic, reactive, type safe Scala client for Apache Pulsar. The official Java client can of course be used, but this client provides better integration with Scala.

Using the client

The first step is to create a client attached to the pulsar cluster.

val client = PulsarClient("pulsar://localhost:6650", "sample/standalone/ns1")

Then we can create either a producer or a consumer by passing in a topic.

val topic = Topic("persistent://sample/standalone/ns1/b")
val producer = client.producer(topic)
val topic = Topic("persistent://sample/standalone/ns1/b")
val consumer = client.consumer(topic, Subscription("mysub"))

The producer and consumer methods also accept a configuration argument. Note that the consumer requires a subscription argument.

Note: Call close() on the client, producer, and consumer once you are finished.


To send a message, take a producer and invoke either the send method, which is synchronous, or the sendAsync method which is asynchronous. The methods will return the MessageId of the message produced. For example:

val messageId: MessageId = producer.send("wibble")


val messageId: Future[MessageId] = producer.sendAsync("wibble")

Note that the async method returns a scala.concurrent.Future. If you are using another effect library, such as cats or monix, then pulsar4s also supports those effects. See the section on #effects.

If an exception is generated, then in the synchronous methods, the exception will simply be thrown. In the asynchronous methods the exception will be surfaced as a failed Future.

If you prefer to have explicit error handling, then you can use the trySend methods which, instead of throwing exceptions, will return a Try[MessageId]. The asynchronous methods don't need this of course, as the error handling is already present as the failed state.


To recieve a message, take a consumer and invoke either the receive, receive(Duration), or the receiveAsync methods. The first two are synchronous and the latter is asynchronous.

val message: Message = consumer.receive


val message: Future[Message] = producer.receiveAsync

Error handling is the same as for sending, with the methods called tryReceive.

Marshalling to/from classes

Sometimes it is useful to send / receive messages directly using classes from your domain model. For this, pulsar4s provides the MessageWriter and MessageReader typeclasses, which are used to generate pulsar Messages from ordinary classes.


When sending messages simply provide an implicit instance of MessageWriter[T] in scope for any class T that you wish to send a message for, and then use the producer.send(t) or producer.sendAsync(t) methods.

For example:

// a simple example of a domain model
case class Person(name: String, location: String)

// how you turn the type into a message is up to you
implicit object PersonWriter extends MessageWriter[Person] {
  override def write(p: Person): Try[Message] = Success(Message( + "/" + p.location))

// now the send reads much cleaner
val jon = Person("jon snow", "the wall")

Some people prefer to write typeclasses manually for the types they need to support, as in the example above. Other people like to just have it done automagically. For those people, pulsar4s provides extensions for the well known Scala Json libraries that can be used to generate messages where the body is a JSON representation of the class.

Simply add the import for your chosen library below and then with those implicits in scope, you can now pass any type you like to the send methods and a MessageWriter will be derived automatically.

Library Module Import
Circe pulsar4s-circe import
import com.sksamuel.pulsar4s.circe._
Jackson pulsar4s-jackson import com.sksamuel.pulsar4s.jackson.Jackson._


Just like sending, but in reverse, you can use the MessageReader typeclass to derive a type T from an incoming message. Bring the typeclass into scope, and then use the receiveT or receiveAsyncT methods on a consumer.

For example:

// a simple example of a domain model
case class Person(name: String, location: String)

// how you read the message is up to you
implicit object PersonReader extends MessageReader[Person] {
    override def read(msg: Message): Try[Person] = {
      val str = new String(
      str.split('/') match {
        case Array(name, location) => Success(Person(name, location))
        case _ => Failure(new RuntimeException(s"Unable to parse $str"))

// now the receive reads much cleaner
val f = producer.receiveAsyncT[Person](jon)
// f contains a success of Person or a failure if it could not be unmarshalled

Reactive Streams

This library also provides a reactive-streams implementation for both publisher and subscriber. To use this, you need to add a dependency on the pulsar4s-streams module.

There are two things you can do with the reactive streams implementation. You can create a subscriber, and stream data into pulsar, or you can create a publisher and stream data out of pulsar. For those who are new to reactive streams, the terminology might seem the wrong way round, ie why does a subscriber send data into pulsar? This is because a subscriber subscribes to another stream, and the endpoint is pulsar. And a publisher publishes from pulsar to another subscriber.


To create a publisher, simply create your client, and then create an instance of PulsarPublisher passing in the topic, and the maximum number of messages to publish. If you wish the publisher to be unbounded, then set max to Long.MaxValue. The constructor also requires an instance of a MessageId to seek for a message. If you wish to stream from the start, then pass in MessageId.earliest, or if you want to start after all current messages then use MessageId.latest. Or of course you can pass in an absolute message id.

val client = PulsarClient("pulsar://localhost:6650", "sample/standalone/ns1")
val topic = Topic("persistent://sample/standalone/ns1/mytopic")
val publisher = new PulsarPublisher(client, topic, MessageId.earliest, Long.MaxValue)

Now you can add subscribers to this publisher. They can of course be from any library that implements the reactive-streams api, o you could stream out to a mongo database, or a filesystem, or whatever you want.



Contributions to pulsar4s are always welcome. Good ways to contribute include:

  • Raising bugs and feature requests
  • Improving the performance of pulsar4s
  • Adding to the documentation


This software is licensed under the Apache 2 license, quoted below.

Copyright 2018 Stephen Samuel

Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the "License"); you may not
use this file except in compliance with the License. You may obtain a copy of
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