The CloudPubSubConnector is a connector to be used with Kafka Connect to publish messages from Kafka to Google Cloud Pub/Sub and vice versa. CloudPubSubConnector provides both a sink connector (to copy messages from Kafka to Cloud Pub/Sub) and a source connector (to copy messages from Cloud Pub/Sub to Kafka).


These instructions assume you are using Maven.

  1. Clone the repository, ensuring to do so recursively to pick up submodules:

    git clone --recursive

  2. Make the jar that contains the connector:

    mvn package

The resulting jar is at target/cps-kafka-connector.jar.

Pre-Running Steps

  1. Regardless of whether you are running on Google Cloud Platform or not, you need to create a project and create service key that allows you access to the Cloud Pub/Sub API's and default quotas.

  2. Create project on Google Cloud Platform. By default, this project will have multiple service accounts associated with it (see "IAM & Admin" within GCP console). Within this section, find the tab for "Service Accounts". Create a new service account and make sure to select "Furnish a new private key". Doing this will create the service account and download a private key file to your local machine.

  3. Go to the "IAM" tab, find the service account you just created and click on the dropdown menu named "Role(s)". Under the "Pub/Sub" submenu, select "Pub/Sub Admin". Finally, the key file that was downloaded to your machine needs to be placed on the machine running the framework. An environment variable named GOOGLE_APPLICATION_CREDENTIALS must point to this file. (Tip: export this environment variable as part of your shell startup file).

    export GOOGLE_APPLICATION_CREDENTIALS=/path/to/key/file

Running a Connector

  1. Copy the cps-kafka-connector.jar to the place where you will run your Kafka connector.

  2. Create a configuration file for the Cloud Pub/Sub connector and copy it to the place where you will run Kafka connect. The configuration should set up the proper Kafka topics, Cloud Pub/Sub topic, and Cloud Pub/Sub project. Sample configuration files for the source and sink connectors are provided at configs/.

  3. Create an appropriate configuration for your Kafka connect instance. More information on the configuration for Kafka connect can be found in the Kafka Users Guide.

CloudPubSubConnector Configs

In addition to the configs supplied by the Kafka Connect API, the Pubsub Connector supports the following configs:

Source Connector

Config Value Range Default Description
cps.subscription String REQUIRED (No default) The name of the subscription to Cloud Pub/Sub, e.g. "sub" for topic "/projects/bar/subscriptions/sub".
cps.project String REQUIRED (No default) The project containing the topic from which to pull messages, e.g. "bar" from above.
kafka.topic String REQUIRED (No default) The topic in Kafka which will receive messages that were pulled from Cloud Pub/Sub.
cps.maxBatchSize Integer 100 The minimum number of messages to batch per pull request to Cloud Pub/Sub.
kafka.key.attribute String null The Cloud Pub/Sub message attribute to use as a key for messages published to Kafka.
kafka.partition.count Integer 1 The number of Kafka partitions for the Kafka topic in which messages will be published to.
kafka.partition.scheme round_robin, hash_key, hash_value round_robin The scheme for assigning a message to a partition in Kafka. The scheme "round_robin" assigns partitions in a round robin fashion, while the schemes "hash_key" and "hash_value" find the partition by hashing the message key and message value respectively.

Sink Connector

Config Value Range Default Description
cps.topic String REQUIRED (No default) The topic in Cloud Pub/Sub to publish to, e.g. "foo" for topic "/projects/bar/topics/foo".
cps.project String REQUIRED (No default) The project in Cloud Pub/Sub containing the topic, e.g. "bar" from above.
maxBufferSize Integer 100 The maximum number of messages that can be received for the messages on a topic partition before publishing them to Cloud Pub/Sub.

Schema Support and Data Model

A pubsub message has two main parts: the message body and attributes. The message body is a ByteString object that translates well to and from the byte[] bodies of Kafka messages. For this reason, we recommend using a converter that produces primitive data types (i.e. integer, float, string, or bytes schema) where possible to prevent deserializing and reserializing the same message body.

Additionally, a Pubsub message size cannot exceed 10MB, so please check your broker's message.max.bytes configuration to prevent possible errors.

The sink connector handles the conversion in the following way:

  • For integer, float, string, and bytes schemas, the bytes of the Kafka message's value are passed directly into the Pubsub message body.
  • For map and struct types, the values are stored in attributes. Pubsub only supports string to string mapping in attributes. To make the connector as versatile as possible, the toString() method will be called on whatever object passed in as the key or value for a map and the value for a struct.
    • One additional feature is we allow a specification of a particular field or key to be placed in the Pubsub message body. To do so, set the messageBodyName configuration with the struct field or map key. This value is stored as a ByteString, and any integer, byte, float, or array type is included in the message body as if it were the sole value.
  • For arrays, we only support primitive array types due to potential collisions of field names or keys of a struct/map array. The connector handles arrays in a fairly predictable fashion, each value is concatenated together into a ByteString object.
  • In all cases, the Kafka key value is stored in the Pubsub message's attributes as a string, currently "key".

The source connector takes a similar approach in handling the conversion from a Pubsub message into a SourceRecord with a relevant Schema.

  • The connector searches for the given kafka.key.attribute in the attributes of the Pubsub message. If found, this will be used as the Kafka key with a string schema type. Otherwise, it will be set to null.
  • If the Pubsub message doesn't have any other attributes, the message body is stored as a byte[] for the Kafka message's value.
  • However, if there are attributes beyond the Kafka key, the value is assigned a struct schema. Each key in the Pubsub message's attributes map becomes a field name, with the values set accordingly with string schemas. In this case, the Pubsub message body is identified by the field name set in "message", and has the schema types bytes.
    • In these cases, to carry forward the structure of data stored in attributes, we recommend using a converter that can represent a struct schema type in a useful way, e.g. JsonConverter.