The Apache Software Foundation Blog

Monday July 20, 2015

The Apache Software Foundation Announces Apache™ NiFi™ as a Top-Level Project

NSA-originated Big Data automation system acquires and delivers data easily, securely, and reliably across enterprise systems in real time.

Forest Hill, MD --20 July 2015-- The Apache Software Foundation (ASF), the all-volunteer developers, stewards, and incubators of more than 350 Open Source projects and initiatives, announced today that Apache™ NiFi™ has graduated from the Apache Incubator to become a Top-Level Project (TLP), signifying that the project's community and products have been well-governed under the ASF's meritocratic process and principles.

Apache NiFi tackles a very old but increasingly relevant problem, which is how to automate the flow of data between systems. NiFi was built to address critical gaps in traditional systems where other solutions lacked sufficient security, interactivity, scalability, and data lineage.

"We took a project with more than eight years of development in a closed source environment and transitioned it to a very open and collaborative space," said Joe Witt, Vice President of Apache NiFi. "How easy that transition was speaks volumes to the effectiveness of the Incubator process and the community around Apache in general."

Based on the concepts of flow-based programming, NiFi is easy to use, powerful, reliable, and highly configurable. Two important features of NiFi are its powerful user interface and its fine grained data provenance tools. The interface allows users to intuitively understand and interact with the data flow directly in the browser, promoting faster and safer iteration.

The data provenance features allow the user to see how an object flowed through the system, replay it, and visualize what happened to it before and after key stages, thereby simplifying data flows that are often large, complex directed graphs involving transformations, forks, joins, and more.

"NiFi's seamless user interface, robust security features, and powerful data provenance offer a unique set of capabilities for solving the challenges of managing distributed systems," said Rob Bearden, CEO of Hortonworks. "We are proud NiFi participants and congratulate the NiFi community on becoming a top-level Apache project."

"NiFi's well designed, mature API has made our integration process remarkably straightforward," said Mike Bishop, Chief Systems Architect at Prescient Edge. "With it, we're able to track the origin, transformation, and persistence of data throughout our analytic processes."

In addition, NiFi uses a component based extension model to rapidly add capabilities to complex dataflows. Out of the box NiFi has several extensions for dealing with file-based dataflows such as FTP, SFTP, and HTTP integration as well as integration with HDFS. One of NiFi's unique features is a rich, Web-based interface for designing, controlling, and monitoring a dataflow.

"The NiFi user interface and ease of extension have made it extremely easy to get up and running and even customize," said Craig Connel, CTO of Leverege. "It is great that it also easily integrates with other parts of the Apache Big Data world like Spark, Kafka, and Hadoop."

NiFi originated at the National Security Agency (NSA) as Niagarafiles, and was submitted to the Apache Incubator in November 2014 as part of the NSA Technology Transfer Program.

"The contributions we've seen from the community over the past few months are really exciting," added Witt. "It is a good sign that while this project has been around for more than eight years by moving to the ASF we've really only just started." 

Catch Apache NiFi in action at OSCON in Portland, Oregon, on Friday 24 July 2015 http://www.oscon.com/open-source-2015/public/schedule/detail/42463

Availability and Oversight
Apache NiFi software is released under the Apache License v2.0 and is overseen by a self-selected team of active contributors to the project. A Project Management Committee (PMC) guides the Project's day-to-day operations, including community development and product releases. For downloads, documentation, and ways to become involved with Apache NiFi, visit http://nifi.apache.org/ and https://twitter.com/apachenifi

About the Apache Incubator
The Apache Incubator is the entry path for projects and codebases wishing to become part of the efforts at The Apache Software Foundation. All code donations from external organizations and existing external projects wishing to join the ASF enter through the Incubator to: 1) ensure all donations are in accordance with the ASF legal standards; and 2) develop new communities that adhere to our guiding principles. Incubation is required of all newly accepted projects until a further review indicates that the infrastructure, communications, and decision making process have stabilized in a manner consistent with other successful ASF projects. While incubation status is not necessarily a reflection of the completeness or stability of the code, it does indicate that the project has yet to be fully endorsed by the ASF. For more information, visit http://incubator.apache.org/

About The Apache Software Foundation (ASF)
Established in 1999, the all-volunteer Foundation oversees more than 350 leading Open Source projects, including Apache HTTP Server --the world's most popular Web server software. Through the ASF's meritocratic process known as "The Apache Way," more than 550 individual Members and 4,700 Committers successfully collaborate to develop freely available enterprise-grade software, benefiting millions of users worldwide: thousands of software solutions are distributed under the Apache License; and the community actively participates in ASF mailing lists, mentoring initiatives, and ApacheCon, the Foundation's official user conference, trainings, and expo. The ASF is a US 501(c)(3) charitable organization, funded by individual donations and corporate sponsors including Bloomberg, Budget Direct, Cerner, Citrix, Cloudera, Comcast, Facebook, Google, Hortonworks, HP, IBM, InMotion Hosting, iSigma, Matt Mullenweg, Microsoft, Pivotal, Produban, WANdisco, and Yahoo. For more information, visit http://www.apache.org/ or follow @TheASF on Twitter.

© The Apache Software Foundation. "Apache", "NiFi", "Apache NiFi", "Hadoop", "Apache Hadoop", "Kafka", "Apache Kafka", "Spark", "Apache Spark", and "ApacheCon" are registered trademarks or trademarks of the Apache Software Foundation in the United States and/or other countries. All other brands and trademarks are the property of their respective owners. 

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