a minimal nsq tcp client

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2.6.05 years ago8 years agoMinified + gzip package size for squeaky in KB



A minimal (no external dependency) nsq client for node.js


Squeaky is designed to be as simple to use as possible, automatically creating new connections when needed. It does, currently, have many limitations however:
  • tls is not supported
  • snappy compression is not supported
  • deflate compression is not supported


To publish to nsq, first create an instance of Squeaky.Publisher:
const publisher = new Squeaky.Publisher(/* options */)

Available options for the publisher are:
  • autoConnect: immediately connect to nsqd upon creation (default: true)
  • host: the nsqd host to connect to (default: '')
  • port: the nsqd port to connect to (default: 4150)
  • topic: the default topic to publish to (default: unset, which requires passing a topic to publish())
  • timeout: message timeout in milliseconds (default: 60000)
  • maxConnectAttempts: maximum number of attempts to make to (re)connect a connection (default: 5)
  • reconnectDelayFactor: factor to multiply connection attempt count by for exponential backoff in milliseconds (default: 1000)
  • maxReconnectDelay: maximum delay between reconnection attempts in milliseconds (default: 120000)

You may also specify options as a URI, for example: nsq://
When creating the publisher, a connection is automatically created to the given host and port.
Valid methods on the publisher are:

await publisher.connect()

Manually connect to nsqd, this will reject if the connection has already been created (for example, by autoConnect being true).

await publisher.publish(topic, data, [delay])

Publish data to topic.
If a default topic was set in your options, you must omit the first parameter. Publishing to multiple topics with one client requires not defining a default.
data may be an object, a Buffer, a string, or an array of any of those types. Any other values will be coerced into a string.
If data is an array, the command used will be an MPUB which will result in each message in the array being delivered individually.
If delay is provided, the command used will be DPUB which results in the message being sent after the given delay. Note that you will receive an array if attempting to delay an MPUB (i.e. if you pass data as an array as well as providing a delay)

await publisher.close()

Close the connection.


Unref the connection preventing it from keeping your application running.


To subscribe to an nsq channel, first create an instance of Squeaky.Subscriber:
const subscriber = new Squeaky.Subscriber(/* options */)

Available options for the subscriber are:
  • topic: the nsqd topic to subscribe to (REQUIRED)
  • channel: the channel on the topic to subscribe to (REQUIRED)
  • autoConnect: automatically poll nsqlookupd (if applicable) and create a connection to the nsqd(s) (default: true)
  • host: the nsqd host to connect to (default: '')
  • port: the nsqd port to connect to (default: 4150)
  • lookup: a string or array of strings representing the requested nsqlookupd instances
  • concurrency: the maximum number of in-flight messages to allow (default: 1)
  • timeout: message timeout in milliseconds (default: 60000)
  • discoverFrequency: how often to poll the nsqlookupd instances (when lookup is set)
  • maxConnectAttempts: maximum number of attempts to make to (re)connect a connection (default: 5)
  • reconnectDelayFactor: factor to multiply connection attempt count by for exponential backoff in milliseconds (default: 1000)
  • maxReconnectDelay: maximum delay between reconnection attempts in milliseconds (default: 120000)
  • keepaliveOffset: the delta between the message's expiration and when the keepalive timer will trigger on messages it is enabled for, this is tunable to allow for network latency (default: 500)

If lookup is specified, it must be a single nsqlookupd URL or an array of URLs, for example 'http://nsqlookupd:4161' or ['http://lookup-1:4161', 'http://lookup-2:4161']. This may also be specified by passing a list of comma separated URIs using the nsqlookup protocol to the constructor such as: nsqlookup://lookup-1:4161/mytopic?channel=mychannel,nsqlookup://lookup-2:4161/. Note that options will only be respected on the first entry, additional entries will only respect an ssl flag, which is only valid when using URIs, that changes the lookup protocol from http to https.
If lookup is not specified, a direct connection will be made to host on port. In this case a single URI may be given to the constructor using the nsq protocol such as: nsq://
Upon creating the subscriber instance, a connection will be automatically created, the given topic and channel will be subscribed to. Each host will have an initial ready state of 0 until a listener is added to the message event.
Every discoverFrequency hosts that are no longer present in lookup hosts will be removed, new hosts will be added, and the concurrency will be redistributed.
If concurrency is less than the number of hosts available, each host will be assigned a ready state of 1 until concurrency is satisfied. The remaining hosts will be assigned a ready state of 0. On the next discoverFrequency interval any hosts with a ready state of 0 will be changed to 1 while hosts that had a ready state of 1 will be changed to 0 based on the host's activity. This helps ensure that concurrency is never exceeded while no hosts are ignored completely.
If concurrency is greater than or equal to the number of hosts available, each host will receive a ready state of Math.floor(concurrency / hostCount) ensuring that concurrency is never exceeded.

await subscriber.connect()

Manually connect to nsq, this includes polling lookupd if applicable. This will reject if a connection has already been established (for example, if autoConnect is true).


In order to receive messages, the subscriber must be given a listener on the message event:
subscriber.on('message', (msg) => {
  // process message here

The message object contains the following properties and methods:
  • id: the message id
  • timestamp: a date object representing the time the message was received
  • attempts: the number of times this message has been delivered and not completed according to the server
  • body: the data associated with the message, this could be any JSON.parse-able value or a Buffer
  • expired: boolean signifying that the message has exceeded its timeout and already been requeued by nsqd
  • expiresIn: the amount of time before this message will be automatically requeued, represented in milliseconds
  • finish(): signal successful processing to the server, must be called to receive a new message
  • requeue([delay]): signal failed processing to the server, the optional delay parameter is represented in milliseconds and represents how long the server will wait before adding the message back to the queue
  • touch(): inform the server that the message is still being processed, used to prevent an automatic timeout
  • keepalive(): automatically touch() the message on an interval until it fully expires, or either finish() or requeue() is called

If none of finish, touch or requeue are called on the message before expiresIn, the message will be returned to nsq and retried later.
In addition, the following methods are available on the subscriber

await subscriber.close()

Close all established connections.

await subscriber.pause()

Pause consumption of new messages.

await subscriber.resume()

Resume consumption of new messages.


Unref all established connections. New connections established after unref has been called will be unreffed upon their creation.


The following events may be emitted:
  • connect: an initial connection has been established.
  • disconnect: the connection has been dropped.
  • reconnectAttempt: a reconnection is about to be attempted
  • reconnect: a reconnection has finished (the connect event will not be fired again after the initial connection).
  • ready: the instance is connected, identified and ready for use.
  • error: an error occurred, this could be related to the connection itself, or could be an error response from nsq.
  • close: this is emitted when the connection is completely closed.
  • drain: all pending writes have been completed.
  • message: a message has been received from nsq (SUBSCRIBER ONLY).
  • removed: a host connection has been removed (SUBSCRIBER ONLY).
  • pollBegin: the client has begun looking for new hosts (SUBSCRIBER ONLY).
  • pollComplete: lookup hosts have been polled and distribution state redistributed (SUBSCRIBER ONLY).

On subscribers, the connect, disconnect, reconnect, ready, close, and drain events will be passed a single argument { host, port } to distinguish events for each host. The error event will have host and port properties on the Error object if the source of the error is connection specific. Errors reaching lookup hosts will have a host property representing the nsqlookupd host that failed to respond correctly, as well as a code property set to ELOOKUPFAILURE.