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Signals and states


Karafka responds to few signals. On a Unix machine, you can use the kill binary or the Process.kill API in Ruby, e.g.

kill -TTIN pid
Process.kill("TTIN", pid)


Karafka will respond to TTIN by printing backtraces for all threads to the logger. This is useful for debugging if you have a Karafka process that appears dead or stuck.

Thread TID-c70x
processing/jobs_queue.rb:64:in `pop'
processing/jobs_queue.rb:64:in `pop'
processing/worker.rb:47:in `process'
processing/worker.rb:37:in `block in call'
Thread TID-c72h
instrumentation/logger_listener.rb:83:in `backtrace'
instrumentation/logger_listener.rb:83:in `block in on_process_notice_signal'
instrumentation/logger_listener.rb:77:in `each'
instrumentation/logger_listener.rb:77:in `on_process_notice_signal'

You need to have the LoggerListener enabled for this signal to print. It is enabled by default, so this signal should work out of the box unless you altered that.


TSTP tells Karafka process to "quiet" as it will shut down shortly. It will stop processing new messages but continue working on current jobs and will not unsubscribe from the topics and partitions it owns. If a given process gets new topics or partitions assigned during this phase, they will not be processed.

Using TSTP allows you to gracefully finish all the work and shut down without causing several rebalances in case you would be stopping many consumer processes.

Use TSTP + TERM to guarantee shut down within a period. The best practice is sending TSTP at the start of deployment and TERM at the end.

You still need to send TERM to exit the Karafka process.


Send TERM or QUIT signal to a Karafka process to shut it down. It will stop accepting new work but continue working on current messages. Workers who do not finish within the shutdown_timeout are forcefully terminated.


The Karafka process can be in a few states during its lifecycle, and each has a separate meaning and indicates different things happening internally.

  • initializing - The initial state of the application before configuration or routes are loaded.
  • initialized - The process is configured in this state but has yet to start listeners and workers.
  • running - The process started Kafka clients and is polling data.
  • quieting - The process received the TSTP signal and is finishing the current work.
  • quiet - The process no longer processes work and will keep running in quiet mode.
  • stopping - The process is finishing current work, no longer accepting more, and shutting down.
  • stopped - The process finished everything and closed all the Kafka connections.
  • terminated - The process is going to exit shortly.