The Long-Winded Guide to Setting up Amlen: Introduction

In this series of blog posts we’re going to describe installing and configuring an Eclipse Amlen broker. It’s going to be a long guide – so for the impatient we’ll do the short version first. The short version is something like:

  1. Download the right builds for your Linux Distribution and install the rpms
  2. Start the server and webui services (sudo systemctl start imaserver && sudo systemctl start imawebui)
  3. Visit https://<host>:9087 in your browser (after altering any firewall rules so your browser can connect to it), login as admin password admin) and configure the broker as you choose (Probably by visiting Messaging > Message Hubs and editing the DemoHub to have a listener running on a port of your choice)

If that’s the short version, why are we going to bother with the long version? Because setting up a secure internet-facing server requires some thought and some conscious choices and we want to talk you through them. This is an opinionated guide and if you want to understand particular options etc. you’ll be better off starting with our documentation but if this guide sounds useful to you, strap in and we’ll start by outlining the topics we’ll cover:

  1. Installing and Initial setup
    This will get you to the point you can connect the first client
  2. Configuring TLS
    Encrypted communication is expected in today’s internet. This covers setting up server certificates so the client can trust the server and optionally setup up client certificates that the server can use them to authenticate the clients.
  3. Authentication: LDAP
    Probably the most common choice for authentication with Amlen is an LDAP server and this describes configuring Amlen to use one.
  4. Authentication: OAuth2
    Another common choice for authentication is an OAuth server and here we describe using Amlen with an OAuth server
  5. Policy Settings (Not yet published)
    Some pointers about clientids and usernames etc and a discussion of messaging policies. Which clients should be allowed to subscribe/publish on which topics depends a lot on the use-case but there a a small number of common patterns that we’ll look at.
  6. High-Availability (Not yet published)
    Setting up Amlen servers in pairs is a really common deployment pattern especially when messages need to be delivered and buffered reliably so this is an important section.
  7. Clustering (Not yet published)
    Horizontally scalability is important for some usecases and clustering Amlen together can help in some cases, we’ll take a closer look here.
  8. Routing and Load Balancing (Not yet published)
    Your servers aren’t much use if your clients can’t find them.
  9. Closing Thoughts (Not yet published)
    Once you get here, you’ve made it – congrats!

Phew, that list looks long and daunting, but it’ll turn out it’s not so hard.

When you’re ready head over to the installation section.

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