MINA vs Netty – A User’s perspective [Part 1]

Have came across this topic a lot, which is better MINA or Netty. Wanted to see what works out well from a User Perspective, thought about trying both Frameworks, from an End Users perspective. This series shall not just find difference, but find similarities in both frameworks as well.

Before I continue, the opinion expressed here are purely mine, and other can tend to disagree. I am a MINA committer myself, so may have a little bias towards MINA. Shall try to keep my discussion unbiased, as much as possible. Having used MINA for a while, have a natural comfort with the framework.

What to Expect

Shall try to evaluate both the frameworks, as if I need to use them in one of my own projects and try to provide rational for my thoughts. User comments shall provide more indepth to the posts. The details shall be covered as I move along on my journey. This post is just the beginning.

Latest Releases

MINA – MINA 2.0 M4
Netty – 3.0.2 GA

Community Activity

Having an active community in an Open Source project is very important. It assures that the project is actively being looked after.

Source of Data

MINA – http://mina.markmail.org/
Netty – http://netty.markmail.org/

MINA community is very active, and scores well above Netty. Though Trustin is very active in Netty, and I hope Netty community shall have active support from more users/developers.


MINA and Netty both have sufficient documentation to start with, but there is need for improvement. Netty Documentation is better organized. MINA Documentation needs a better organization. (Blame me for this, I am supposed to take care of this).

Coming up Next

Working of examples on both the frameworks and try to come up with Application Architectures soon.

3 thoughts on “MINA vs Netty – A User’s perspective [Part 1]

  1. Hi Ashish,

    I would add a few things :
    1) It would be fair to mention that Trustin worked on MINA until last summer, when he started Netty 3 from scratch.
    2) Docupmentation on MINA is getting better, thanks to your hard work !

  2. I developed the Google Protocol Buffers RPC implementation ( http://code.google.com/p/protobuf-rpc-pro ) initially using Mina 2. I did a performance test against a Netty implementation and found that the Netty implementation was at least 10% faster. I was therefore forced to re-write my project on the basis of MINA. This is because if youre going to use Google Protobuf RPC, you are looking for highest performance.

    I found that the MINA2 documentation ( 3rd quater 2010 ) is still very lacking of technical details ( threading, concurrency etc ) – where with Netty, there has been more effort, and the javadocs are very comprehensive.

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