AWS Big Data Blog

Introducing enhanced functionality for worker configuration management in Amazon MSK Connect

Amazon MSK Connect is a fully managed service for Apache Kafka Connect. With a few clicks, MSK Connect allows you to deploy connectors that move data between Apache Kafka and external systems.

MSK Connect now supports the ability to delete MSK Connect worker configurations, tag resources, and manage worker configurations and custom plugins using AWS CloudFormation. Together, these new capabilities make it straightforward to manage your MSK Connect resources and automate deployments through CI/CD pipelines.

MSK Connect makes it effortless to stream data to and from Apache Kafka over a private connection without requiring infrastructure management expertise. With a few clicks, you can deploy connectors like an Amazon S3 sink connector for loading streaming data to Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3), deploy connectors developed by third parties like Debezium for streaming change logs from databases into Apache Kafka, or deploy your own connector customized for your use case.

MSK Connect integrates external systems or AWS services with Apache Kafka by continuously copying streaming data from a data source into your Apache Kafka cluster, or continuously copying data from your Apache Kafka cluster into a data sink. The connector can also perform lightweight tasks such as transformation, format conversion, or filtering data before delivering the data to a destination. You can use a plugin to create the connecter; these custom plugins are resources that contain the code that defines connector logic.

The primary components of MSK Connect are workers. Each worker is a Java virtual machine (JVM) process that runs the connector logic based on the worker configuration provided. Worker configurations are resources that contain your connector configuration properties that can be reused across multiple connectors. Each worker is comprised of a set of tasks that copy the data in parallel.

Today, we are announcing three new capabilities in MSK Connect:

  • The ability to delete worker configurations
  • Support for resource tags for enabling resource grouping, cost allocation and reporting, and access control with tag-based policies
  • Support in AWS CloudFormation to manage worker configurations and custom plugins

In the following sections, we look at the new functionalities in more detail.

Delete worker configurations

Connectors for integrating Amazon Managed Streaming for Apache Kafka (Amazon MSK) with other AWS and partner services are usually created using a worker configuration (default or custom). These configurations can grow with the creation and deletion of connectors, potentially creating configuration management issues.

You can now use the new delete worker configuration API to delete unused configurations. The service checks that the worker configuration is not in use by any connectors before deleting the configuration. Additionally, you can now use a prefix filter to list worker configurations and custom plugins using the ListWorkerConfigurations and ListCustomPlugins API calls. The prefix filter allows you to list the selective resources with names starting with the prefix so you can perform quick selective deletes.

To test the new delete API, complete the following steps:

  1. On the Amazon MSK console, create a new worker configuration.
  2. Provide a name and optional description.
  3. In the Worker configuration section, enter your configuration code.

MSK Connect Worker Configuration

After you create the configuration, a Delete option is available on the configuration detail page (see the following screenshot) if the configuration is not being used in any connector.

To support this new API, an additional workerConfigurationState has been added, so you can more easily track the state of the worker configuration. This new state will be returned in the API call responses for CreateWorkerConfiguration, DescribeWorkerConfiguration, and ListWorkerConfigurations.

MSK Connect Worker Configuration

  1. Choose Delete to delete the worker configuration.
  2. In the confirmation pop-up, enter the name of the worker configuration, then choose Delete.

Delete MSKC Worker Configuration

If the worker configuration is being used with any connector, the Delete option is disabled, as shown in the following screenshot.

Resource tags

MSK Connect now also has support for resource tags. Tags are key-value metadata that can be associated with AWS service resources. You can add tags to connectors, custom plugins, and worker configurations to organize and find resources used across AWS services. In the following screenshots, our example MSK Connect connector, plugin, and worker configuration have been tagged with the resource tag key project and value demo-tags.

You can now tag your Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) and Amazon S3 resources with the same project name, for example. Then you can use the tag to search for all resources linked to this particular project for cost allocation, reporting, resource grouping, or access control. MSK Connect supports adding tags when creating resources, applying tags to an existing resource, removing tags from a resource, and querying tags associated with a resource.

AWS CloudFormation support

Previously, you were only able to provision an MSK Connect connector with AWS CloudFormation by using an existing worker configuration. With this new feature, you can now perform CREATE, READ, UPDATE, DELETE, and LIST operations on connectors, and create and add new worker configurations using AWS CloudFormation.

The following code is an example of creating a worker configuration:

"Type": "AWS::KafkaConnect::WorkerConfiguration"
"Name": "WorkerConfigurationName",
"Description": "WorkerConfigurationDescription",
"PropertiesFileContent": String,
"Tags": [Tag,…],

The return values are as follows:

  • ARN of the newly created worker configuration
  • State of the new worker configuration
  • Creation time of new worker configuration
  • Latest revision of the new worker configuration


MSK Connect is a fully managed service that provisions the required resources, monitors the health and delivery state of connectors, maintains the underlying hardware, and auto scales connectors to balance the workloads. In this post, we discussed the new features that were added to MSK Connect, which streamline connector and worker management with the introduction of APIs for deleting worker configurations, tagging MSK Connect resources, and support in AWS CloudFormation to create non-default worker configurations.

These capabilities are available in all AWS Regions where Amazon MSK Connect is available. For a list of Region availability, refer to AWS Services by Region. To learn more about MSK Connect, visit the Amazon MSK Connect Developer Guide.

About the Authors

Chinmayi Narasimhadevara is a is a Solutions Architect focused on Big Data and Analytics at Amazon Web Services. Chinmayi has over 20 years of experience in information technology. She helps AWS customers build advanced, highly scalable and performant solutions.

Harita Pappu is Technical Account Manager based out California. She has over 18 years of experience working in software industry building and scaling applications. She is passionate about new technologies and focused on helping customers achieve cost optimization and operational excellence.