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IBM Integration Bus vs Mule ESB comparison

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Executive Summary
Updated on March 30, 2022

We performed a comparison between IBM Integration Bus and Mule ESB based on our users’ reviews in five categories. After reading all of the collected data, you can find our conclusion below.

  • Ease of Deployment: Most IBM Integration Bus users report the initial setup to be straightforward, as do all Mule ESB reviewers.
  • Features: Users of both products are happy with their performance, stability, and scalability. IBM Integration Bus users say it is easy to use and flexible. Several IBM Integration Bus users say the solution uses a lot of memory. Mule ESB users say it is an easy and intuitive solution. A couple of users say the dependencies can be difficult to manage.
  • Pricing: Reviewers for both products feel the solution is expensive for smaller companies.
  • ROI: Reviewers for both products report seeing an ROI.
  • Service and Support: Users of both products are mostly satisfied with the level of support they receive.

Comparison Results: Both solutions receive high marks from reviewers. IBM Integration Bus has a slight advantage over Mule ESB due to its flexibility and user-friendly interface.

To learn more, read our detailed IBM Integration Bus vs. Mule ESB report (Updated: July 2022).
Buyer's Guide
IBM Integration Bus vs. Mule ESB
July 2022
Find out what your peers are saying about IBM Integration Bus vs. Mule ESB and other solutions. Updated: July 2022.
620,319 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Featured Review
Quotes From Members
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use.
Here are some excerpts of what they said:
"The product is a user-customized tool so that you can adjust it to your specific needs pretty well with little trouble.""The stability is mostly pretty good.""I use the integration of Kafka and the message flow, which is really good. It is also good for moving any file from one location to another. Using IBM Integration Bus in the data stage is pretty simple. You can see the preview and other things. The MQ server integrated with IBM Integration Bus is really great. I don't have to do a lot of configuration from that side. It is really good.""The solution offers good performance and is stable.""It aligns well with containerized environments, which increases its scalability and high availability.""Having the solution come from IBM you know you are receiving a product of quality in components and in the services, it is very good.""I am into microservices using Java Spring Boot, but if we are using legacy systems, IBM Integration Bus is very good for them. They have their own computational logic called EC12, their own proprietary language. You can do any kind of complex logic and can implement other ESVs that I have seen.""Seamlessly integrates your different applications."

More IBM Integration Bus Pros →

"The most valuable features of Mule ESB are its ease of use, documentation, ease to adapt to newer security and vulnerabilities, and a lot of help available. Additionally, there is a lot of flexibility, many patches available, and they provide APIs. They are a market standard.""The solution has a good graphical interface.""This tool has exceptional API management and integration connectors in addition to multiple out of the box connectors.""The cloud and integration abilities are most useful allowing us to use applications such as Salesforce and DataWeave.""The solution improved my company by modernizing the way we offer services and improving the user experience.""It was pretty fast to develop APIs on this platform, which is something I liked about it. So, the time to value was pretty good.""It is easily deployable and manageable. It has microservices-based architecture, which means that you can deploy the solution based on your needs, and you can manage the solution very easily.""I like that Mule ESB provides fast and good technical support."

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"The solution is complex and there is a need for more resources and greatly improved quality.""The product lacks an integrated testing module.""IBM Integration Bus can improve JSON Schema validations. We don't have any kind of nodes that can support that kind of validation. If we want to containerize it by means of the docker's containers in the clouds, we are not able to manage it very well.""IBM doesn't really have a very strong community surrounding the product. Most of its direct competitors are open source solutions, and those have an excellent and well-developed community around the tech to help users navigate the ins and outs of the product. IBM is lacking in this area.""Today, the IBM business rule engine, the DataPower is outside the Enterprise Service Bus. It's sold as a different feature or application. If it could be integrated, then it's able to handle a lot more of what we are doing now rather than just have a stateless ESB that you can't do much on, and a set of normal business rules.""It provides all the features that are required for day-to-day work. So far, I haven't seen any major issues that impact our work. I have been told that IBM App Connect Enterprise, which is the next version of IIB, is really good. It is better than IIB, and it gives you more coverage in terms of application integration.""Storage capacity of the product should be addressed.""Session management can sometimes hand forcing server reboots."

More IBM Integration Bus Cons →

"We would like the ability to use our own code. This would allow us to develop customizations with ease. Additionally, it would be nice to have more analytics or insights on the exchanged information between databases.""It would be great to see implementing security modules as a feature.""The price of Mule ESB could improve.""It should have some amount of logging.""There are some features on the commercial version of the solution that would be great if they were on the community version. Additionally, if they added more authorization features it would be helpful.""MuleSoft isn't as mature as some other integration technologies out there like IBM WebSphere. There's room for growth, and MuleSoft is working toward that.""In the next release, I would like to see improvement in the generator for the DataWeave language so that it's a little more graphic.""There are some issues with both stability and scalability."

More Mule ESB Cons →

Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "The price of this product could be lower."
  • "The solution requires a license and is very expensive here in India."
  • "The pricing could be improved to make it more competitive."
  • "The price of the license could be cheaper."
  • "The maintenance and support of the product are very expensive."
  • "IBM Integration Bus itself is prices fair but App-Connect is a bit expensive which we use in conjunction with it."
  • "IBM provides a quite complicated licensing model."
  • "I generally do not get involved in the licensing or pricing because I'm a hardcore technical guy, but I'm aware of the fact that IBM is highly expensive, so not everybody can afford it. All the products are licensed."
  • More IBM Integration Bus Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "The licensing is yearly, and there are additional fees for services."
  • "This product is cheaper than some offered by other vendors, although there is a problem because you have to pay for some third-party adapters."
  • "Most of the challenges that I had with this solution were for smaller customers. There is not a good licensing model or pricing model. It is more expensive than other solutions, and that's the downside of MuleSoft. I had to be creative to be able to sell it to the business, but we did. This is something they have to work on because for large companies, it's affordable, but for small and medium businesses, it's very hard to sell."
  • "This product is expensive, but it does offer value for money."
  • "I think the price is very high. If you use TIBCO BW, the license is for the CPU usage, then the IPS, and support. I also think the license for the product is a one-time expense."
  • "The price of the Mule ESB commercial version is expensive. However, they have a free community version."
  • "Mule ESB is a costly solution. We pay approximately $80,000 annually for the system. The cost of the number of instances, annual subscription, and cloud hosting services are expensive."
  • More Mule ESB Pricing and Cost Advice →

    Use our free recommendation engine to learn which ESB (Enterprise Service Bus) solutions are best for your needs.
    620,319 professionals have used our research since 2012.
    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer:I was previously part of the Oracle SOA/OSB development team. In my current capacity I architected solutions using MuleSoft Anypoint Platform on cloud / on-premises and hybrid modes and on PCE/RTF on… more »
    Top Answer:Our team ran a comparison of IBM’s Integration Bus vs. Mule ESB in order to determine what sort of ESB software was the best fit for our organization. Ultimately we decided to choose IBM Integration… more »
    Top Answer:I am into microservices using Java Spring Boot, but if we are using legacy systems, IBM Integration Bus is very good for them. They have their own computational logic called EC12, their own… more »
    Top Answer:Mule ESB has a user-friendly design, and everything is in one place. The API and architecture are popular right now. Also, MuleSoft has a large and supportive online community.
    Top Answer:Mule ESB is a costly solution. We pay approximately $80,000 annually for the system. The cost of the number of instances, annual subscription, and cloud hosting services are expensive.
    Top Answer:MuleSoft isn't as mature as some other integration technologies out there like IBM WebSphere. There's room for growth, and MuleSoft is working toward that. They're already implementing a graph system… more »
    Average Words per Review
    Average Words per Review
    Also Known As
    IBM WebSphere ESB
    Learn More

    IBM Integration Bus is a market-leading software solution for application integration. It facilitates universal connectivity across enterprise systems, applications, and data, and offers a full range of integration capabilities on a flexible, secure, high-performance platform. You can use IBM Integration Bus to connect apps regardless of the communication formats or protocols they support. This connectivity enables interaction and data exchange among your varied applications in an adaptable, dynamic, and extensible infrastructure. IBM Integration Bus routes, transforms, and enriches messages from one location to another. It offers support for a wide range of functions, including routing, manipulating, filtering, enriching, monitoring, distribution, collection, correlation, and detection.

    You can choose between IBM Integration Bus Advanced Edition, which is appropriate for a production setting, and IBM Integration Bus for Developers (Developer Edition), which is cost-free for development and testing purposes.

    The interactions with IBM Integration Bus can be split into two categories:

    1. Development, testing, and deployment of applications. To program your applications, you can choose from one or more of the available options:
      • Patterns offer reusable solutions that distill a tried-and-true strategy for resolving a typical architecture, design, or deployment task in a specific context. You can use them as-is or tweak them to meet your needs.
      • Message flows describe your application's connectivity logic, which specifies the precise route your data takes in the integration node and, consequently, the processing that the message nodes in that flow perform on it.
      • Message nodes contain the integration logic that must be applied to your data when it passes through your integration node.
      • Message trees describe data in an efficient, format-independent manner. Many of the included nodes allow you to study and edit the contents of message trees, and you can add additional nodes to your own design.
      • You can implement transformations using graphical mapping, JavaTM, ESQL, and XSL, and choose based on the expertise of your workforce without having to provide retraining.
    2. Operational management and performance. The following features of IBM Integration Bus support your deployment's management and performance:
      • A wide range of administrative and system management choices for developed solutions.
      • Support for a variety of hardware platforms and operating systems.
      • A scalable, high-performing architecture built on the needs of traditional transaction processing environments.
      • Tight integration with software solutions from IBM and other suppliers that provide similar management and networking services.

    IBM Integration Bus Benefits

    There are many benefits to implementing IBM Integration Bus. Some of the biggest advantages the solution offers include:

    • Use the platform’s powerful capabilities to handle various integration requirements to meet the demands of any size project.
    • Help your entire organization make better business decisions by offering quick access, visibility, and control over data as it moves through your business applications and systems.
    • Connect using a variety of diverse applications and web services, eliminating the requirement for complex point-to-point connectivity.
    • To make the most of your existing Microsoft.NET expertise and software investment, use the extended support for Microsoft applications and services.
    • Provide a standardized, simple, and flexible integration base to allow you to more quickly and effectively serve business needs and scale.

    Reviews from Real Users

    IBM Integration Bus stands out among its competitors for a number of reasons. Two major ones are its robust data enrichment and its event correlation tool. PeerSpot users take note of the advantages of these features in their reviews:

    Richard W., Chief Executive Officer at Responsiv, writes of the solution, “It reduces the need for programmers of consumer applications to understand where data is sourced, or how it is combined. It allows us to avoid the need for consumers to understand multiple API protocols and security arrangements, and in some circumstances can reduce the impact of systems being unavailable.

    Another PeerSpot reviewer, an Integration Architect at a tech services company, notes, “One of the most valuable features is how seamless and easy to use this solution is. It's compatible with the cloud, it's a very seamless and fantastic tool.” He adds, “I rate this solution a nine out of ten.”

    For companies looking to modernize and unlock the value of existing on-premises systems and applications, an enterprise service bus (ESB) architecture serves as a critical foundation layer for SOA. When deployed as an ESB, the Mule runtime engine of Anypoint Platform combines the power of data and application integration across legacy systems and SaaS applications, with a seamless path to the other capabilities of Anypoint Platform and the full power of API-led connectivity.
    Learn more about IBM Integration Bus
    Learn more about Mule ESB
    Sample Customers
    Salesbox, €sterreichische Bundesbahnen (€BB), Road Buddy, Swiss Federal Railways, Electricity Supply Board, The Hartree Centre, ESB Networks
    Ube, PacificComp, University of Witwatersrand, Justice Systems, Camelot
    Top Industries
    Financial Services Firm50%
    Computer Software Company24%
    Comms Service Provider6%
    Computer Software Company27%
    Comms Service Provider14%
    Financial Services Firm12%
    Insurance Company7%
    Computer Software Company30%
    Financial Services Firm30%
    Healthcare Company10%
    Manufacturing Company10%
    Computer Software Company31%
    Comms Service Provider14%
    Financial Services Firm9%
    Energy/Utilities Company7%
    Company Size
    Small Business20%
    Midsize Enterprise19%
    Large Enterprise61%
    Small Business14%
    Midsize Enterprise14%
    Large Enterprise72%
    Small Business38%
    Midsize Enterprise8%
    Large Enterprise54%
    Small Business14%
    Midsize Enterprise14%
    Large Enterprise72%
    Buyer's Guide
    IBM Integration Bus vs. Mule ESB
    July 2022
    Find out what your peers are saying about IBM Integration Bus vs. Mule ESB and other solutions. Updated: July 2022.
    620,319 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    IBM Integration Bus is ranked 3rd in ESB (Enterprise Service Bus) with 33 reviews while Mule ESB is ranked 2nd in ESB (Enterprise Service Bus) with 20 reviews. IBM Integration Bus is rated 7.8, while Mule ESB is rated 8.2. The top reviewer of IBM Integration Bus writes "Good integration capabilities with an easy-to-learn language but is very expensive". On the other hand, the top reviewer of Mule ESB writes "Scaled easily, had good ROI and time to value, and didn't require taking care of the infrastructure". IBM Integration Bus is most compared with IBM WebSphere Message Broker, IBM DataPower Gateway, Oracle Service Bus, Red Hat Fuse and TIBCO ActiveMatrix Service Bus, whereas Mule ESB is most compared with webMethods Integration Server, Oracle Service Bus, TIBCO ActiveMatrix Service Bus, Red Hat Fuse and Mule Anypoint Platform. See our IBM Integration Bus vs. Mule ESB report.

    See our list of best ESB (Enterprise Service Bus) vendors.

    We monitor all ESB (Enterprise Service Bus) reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.