High Performance JVMs for Microservices

Java Virtual Machines (JVMs) are a popular choice for microservice environments. Knowing Ratpack & Spring Boot helps in building a high performance JVM.

Digital Delivery
6 min
Digital Delivery
High Performance JVMs for Microservices

Java Virtual Machines (JVMs) are a popular choice for microservice environments, but building a high performance JVM can still be a struggle — especially for developers who haven't heard about Ratpack and Spring Boot.

These developer-centric web frameworks were designed for JVMs. Together, they'll bring lightweight efficiency to your microservices environment with a host of benefits.

Why High Performance Matters

Those familiar with software development know that everything is a tradeoff, and that still rings true in modern microservices environments.

If you're looking for easy code deployment and operations, you'll probably pay for it in an area like performance. These conveniences create more overhead, which can slow down applications.

While you'll have to make tradeoffs along the way, staying focused on performance is paramount to success when it comes to microservices.

Fail to address key performance issues and you'll end up with microservices apps that are a challenge to use.

Speed and reliability both factor into performance, and those looking to ensure performance in a microservices environment tend to turn to Java Virtual Machines (JVMs).

Let's explore why and how you can implement them in the best way.

How to Build Better JVMs for Microservices

There are plenty of reasons to choose Java Virtual Machines for a microservices environment. Particularly, its annotation syntax is straightforward.

That readability offers a ton of value, especially when you're dealing with an increasingly complex development environment.

Thanks to Java annotations, developers can write microservices far faster, and Spring Boot takes it a step further.

If you combine Spring Boot with Ratpack, you'll have a real powerhouse to support your JVMs.

Ratpack offers reactive programming with a non-blocking, high-throughput web layer along with an easy way to define structure and process HTTP requests.

Spring Boot integrates with the Spring ecosystem, providing an easy means for configuring application components.

If you're looking for tech to support cloud-native microservices, look no further.

What Is Ratpack?

Ratpack's libraries are based in JVM and optimized for real-time applications. Ratpack is compliant with reactive design. Out of the box, it doesn't matter what the underlying dependency injection framework is for your application.

Ratpack uses DI abstraction, or the Registry, to allow access to service layer components. The Registry is a big part of Ratpack's infrastructure.

The biggest benefits of using Ratpack include how lightweight it is. Ratpack is fast and scalable. Also, when compared to other frameworks, like DropWizard, Ratpack consumes far less memory.

It's also built on top of Netty, so it's event-driven. Its non-blocking nature makes it ideal for reactive programming. Lastly, it supports Guice dependency management.

If you decide to use Ratpack, you'll be happy to know that it contains testing libraries to help you deploy test cases in an instant.

What Is Spring Boot?

Spring Boot is a micro framework that's just as likable as Ratpack when it comes to microservices. Spring Boot allows easy access to the entire Spring ecosystem, which it's built on top of.

With Spring, you can easily inject dependencies and develop loosely coupled applications using a lightweight framework that supports both XML and annotations.

With Spring Boot, you can shorten code length and run a Spring application in an instant.

Spring Boot is far more user-friendly than Spring, to the point where you don't even need to familiarize yourself with Spring before using Spring Boot.

Some of Spring Boot's best features include its automatic configuration and "opinionated" execution.

For instance, Spring Boot will choose defaults for each configuration and install any necessary packages based on your dependencies. This greatly reduces setup time.

Using Ratpack and Spring Boot for Microservices

If you're looking to try Ratpack and Spring Boot together for your high-performance JVM, it's best to start with a Gradle build script.

Implement the standard project structure from Java and then import the Ratpack Spring Boot integration.

From there, set up a "main class," which is the class you will use to start and run your app.

Inside of the main class you create, build a RatpackServer instance. This is where the RESTful HTTP API handler chain will exist.

With a simple "run" command, you're now ready to run your test application using the command-line interface (CLI) from the project's root. A series of simple curl commands will help you test that it's working properly.

The next step is to implement the actual requirements of an API that you'd like to test, which requires you to design the dependencies of your service layer.

This is where you might try using something from Spring Boot, like Spring Data JPA. As you go along developing your simple test application, you'll be amazed by how little code is required to achieve your desired results.

Ultimately, Ratpack and Spring Boot are lightweight, and that's what makes them ideal for creating high performance JVMs to support your microservices environment.

Rethink Your Approach to Microservices

Microservices continue to dominate the world of software development thanks to their ability to greatly improve performance, scalability, and availability across the board.

If you're implementing microservices for the first time, or if you're trying to revamp your current approach, partnering with the right professionals is the quickest way to get to where you want to be.

How Adservio can help

We've helped countless companies improve the performance of their environments and completely rethink the approach they've been taking to development.

If your company could use a helping hand, our team is standing by.

At Adservio, we're experts in building resilient digital experiences — especially those that employ the microservices framework.

Contact us today to learn how Adservio can help your team quickly get to the next level in microservices development and avoid all the common pitfalls along the way.

Published on
November 29, 2021

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