Best JavaScript and Node.js Open Source ETL Tools for 2021

on Data Integration, ETL, ETL Tools • April 6th, 2021 • Write for Hevo

One technology that has become pivotal for any organization in today’s world is Node.js. Node.js is a serverless, Open-Source environment that runs JavasScript-based scripts to build scalable applications. Along with Node.js, finding the correct ETL (Extract, Transform and Load) tool for your business is essential as they help you unify and enrich data from numerous data sources, allowing you to carry out an insightful analysis & gain actionable insights.

To combine these 2 technologies, JavaScript and Node.js Open Source ETL Tools were developed. Whenever you need to build applications using Node.js, you need an ETL tool that works well with it. JavaScript and Node.js Open Source ETL Tools have gained popularity because these tools help keep business costs low and offer flexibility in building applications at the same time. They also offer a simple UI (User Interface) and help users set up the ETL process with ease.

This article gives you a comprehensive overview of the best JavaScript and Node.js Open Source ETL Tools and describes their features briefly, along with few limitations of leveraging these tools. It also outlines the ETL process and introduces the Node.js technology for non-technical users to help companies choose the best tool according to their business goals. Read along to find out about these amazing tools.

Table of Contents

Prerequisites

  • Working knowledge of SaaS applications.
  • Working knowledge of Open-Source and Cloud Environments.

Understanding the ETL Process

The Modern Data Analytics Stack leverages the ETL process to extract data from data sources such as Social Media Platforms, Email/SMS services, Customer Service Platforms, Surveys, and a lot more to help gain valuable and actionable customer insights or to store the data in Data Warehouses. The ETL process consists of 3 steps:

  • Extraction: Extraction is an essential part of the ETL process as it helps unify Structured and Unstructured data from a diverse set of data sources such as Databases, SaaS applications, files, CRMs, etc. Extraction Tools simplify this process by allowing users to extract valuable information in a matter of a few clicks. All this is done without having to write any complex code.
  • Transformation: Transformation is the process of converting the extracted data into a common format so that it can be better understood by a Data Warehouse or a BI (Business Intelligence) tool. Some transformation techniques include Sorting, Cleaning, Removing Redundant Information, and Verifying the Data from data sources.
  • Loading: Loading is the process of storing the transformed data into a destination, normally a Data Warehouse, and also supports analysis of the data using various BI tools to gain valuable insights and build reports and dashboards. The Loading stage is crucial as the customer data is visualized using different BI tools after this stage.

The given figure highlights the stages of the ETL process:

ETL Process
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Simplify the JavaScript ETL Process with Hevo’s No-code Data Pipeline

Hevo Data, a No-code Data Pipeline helps to load data from any data source such as Databases, SaaS applications, Cloud Storage, SDK’s, and Streaming Services and simplifies the ETL process. It supports 100+ data sources including JavaScript and is a 3-step process by just selecting the data source, providing valid credentials, and choosing the destination. Hevo not only loads the data onto the desired Data Warehouse but also enriches the data and transforms it into an analysis-ready form without having to write a single line of code.

Its completely automated Data Pipeline offers data to be delivered in real-time without any loss from source to destination. Its fault-tolerant and scalable architecture ensure that the data is handled in a secure, consistent manner with zero data loss and supports different forms of data. The solutions provided are consistent and work with different BI tools as well.

Check out why Hevo is the Best:

  • Secure: Hevo has a fault-tolerant architecture that ensures that the data is handled in a secure, consistent manner with zero data loss.
  • Schema Management: Hevo takes away the tedious task of schema management & automatically detects the schema of incoming data and maps it to the destination schema.
  • Minimal Learning: Hevo, with its simple and interactive UI, is extremely simple for new customers to work on and perform operations.
  • Hevo Is Built To Scale: As the number of sources and the volume of your data grows, Hevo scales horizontally, handling millions of records per minute with very little latency.
  • Incremental Data Load: Hevo allows the transfer of data that has been modified in real-time. This ensures efficient utilization of bandwidth on both ends.
  • Live Support: The Hevo team is available round the clock to extend exceptional support to its customers through chat, email, and support calls.
  • Live Monitoring: Hevo allows you to monitor the data flow and check where your data is at a particular point in time.

Simplify your Data Analysis with Hevo today! Sign up here for a 14-day free trial!

Introduction to Node.js

Node.js Logo
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Node.js is a cross-platform, Open-Source, and back-end JavaScript runtime environment that uses a V8 engine to execute JavaScript code outside a web browser. It is mostly used to build scalable applications and web pages. Node.js is an asynchronous technology, which means that data is transmitted through networks without any time constraints.

The event-driven runtime of Node.js handles all types of HTTP requests and sleeps when it’s not required. This enables developers to use JavaScript and write server-side scripts to produce dynamic web content before the content is sent to the user’s web browser. Node.js consists of the “.js” standard filename extension for JavaScript code and represents a “JavaScript everywhere” paradigm, thereby unifying web application development around a single programming language, rather than different languages for server-side and client-side scripts.

JavaScript and Node.js Open Source ETL Tools can be slightly complicated for non-technical users but are the best tools when it comes to handling critical Big Data jobs that demand enterprise-level performance.

To learn more about Node.js, click this link.

Top 5 JavaScript and Node.js Open Source ETL Tools

Choosing the best JavaScript and Node.js Open Source ETL Tool can be an exhausting task as each tool has its advantages and disadvantages. Generally, companies opt for the tools that are regularly updated and monitored by a large community and bring in new features too. Here is a comprehensive list of the best JavaScript and Node.js Open Source ETL Tools:

1) Nextract

Nextract is an ETL Tool built on Node.js Streams and is designed by Github contributor Chad Auld. It is suited for beginner and mid-level programmers. The main goal of Nextract is to help developers make their work easier by using the flexible and asynchronous nature of the Node.js runtime environment as compared to other Java-based ETL Tools.

By using npm packages (JavaScript packages) you can extend the capabilities of Nextract. This Node.js Open Source ETL Tool supports multiple databases including Postgres, MySQL, MSSQL(Microsoft SQL Server), MariaDB, Oracle, and many more. It can extract data from database queries and reflect the results onto tables. It works best with CSV and JSON files and by adding plug-ins, you can perform additional ETL operations like Sorting, Filtering, and Math. The only limitation of Nextract is that it cannot work with Big Data as it runs on the resources of a single machine.

To learn more about Nextract, click this link.

Nextract Github Page
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2) Datapumps

Datapumps is a JavaScript and Node.js Open Source ETL Tool that uses “pumps” to read inputs and write outputs. An example can include exporting data from MySQL to Excel using a single pump. In case you work with complex data, you can create groups of pumps to export data.

Datapumps supports ETL processes such as Data Transformation, Encapsulation, Error Handling & Debugging. One limitation of Datapumps is that they cannot perform the ETL processes on their own and can only pass data in a controlled manner. To make it efficient you can add “mixins”. Mixins help import, export, and transfer your data. Currently, Datapumps support 10 types of mixins.

To learn more about Datapumps, click this link.

Datapumps Github Page
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3) ETL

ETL is a JavaScript and Node.js Open Source Tool that helps perform ETL processes from MySQL to PostgreSQL. It was developed by Github contributor John Skillbeck and is one of the first Node.js Open Source ETL Tools created.

To learn more about ETL, click this link.

ETL Github Page
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4) Empujar

Empujar is a Node.js Open Source ETL Tool that helps extract data and perform backup operations. It is developed by TaskRabbit and takes advantage of Node.js’s asynchronous behavior to run data operations in series or parallel. It uses a Book, Chapter, and Page format to represent data. Top-level objects are known as Books and they contain sequential Chapters with Pages that can run in parallel up to a limit that you can set.

This tool integrates with different types of databases including MySQL, FTP, S3, Amazon Redshift, and many more.

To learn more about Empujar, click this link.

Empujar Github Page
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5) Extraload

Extraload is a lightweight ETL Tool for Node.js that moves data from files into databases and between databases. It was developed by Github contributor Alyaton Norgard. It processes ETL operations quickly as it uses JavaScript coding and Node.js’s time-saving non-block programming. Along with ETL operations, Extraload also updates search platform indexes like Apache Solr.

This tool also houses API reference pages that explain how to write scripts and create drivers.

To learn more about Extraload, click this link.

Extraload Github Page
Image Source

Limitations of JavaScript & Node.js Open Source ETL Tools

Although JavaScript and Node.js Open Source ETL Tools can provide a solid backbone for your Data Pipeline, they have few limitations especially when it comes to providing support. As these tools are work-in-progress tools many of them are not fully developed and are not compatible with multiple data sources. Some of the limitations of these tools include:

  • Enterprise Application Connectivity: Companies are not able to connect a few of their applications with Node.js Open Source ETL Tools due to compatibility reasons.
  • Management & Error Handling Capabilities: Many Open-Source ETL Tools are not able to handle errors easily due to their lack of error handling capabilities.
  • Large Data Volumes & Small Batch Windows: Many Node.js Open Source ETL Tools need to analyze large data volumes but can process the data in small batches only. This is because many of these tools are Command-Line Interfaces and need both the power of Node.js and the ETL tool to function effectively. 
  • Complex Transformation Requirements: Companies that have complex transformation needs cannot use Node.js Open Source ETL Tools. This is because they often lack support for performing complex transformations.
  • Lack of Customer Support Teams: As Open-Source ETL Tools are managed by communities and developers all around the world, they do not have specific customer support teams to handle issues.
  • Poor Security Features: Being Open-Source causes these tools to have poor security infrastructure and become prone to many cyber attacks.

Conclusion

This article gave a comprehensive list of the best JavaScript and Node.js Open Source ETL Tools in 2021. It also gave an introduction to the ETL Process and the Node.js technology. It further explained the features of these tools. Finally, it highlighted some of the limitations as well. Overall, JavaScript and Node.js Open Source ETL Tools provide all types of users to work with both technologies seamlessly. They efficiently interrelate both these technologies to help companies gather valuable & actionable insights.

In case you want to integrate data into your desired Database/destination, then Hevo Data is the right choice for you! It will help simplify the ETL and management process of both the data sources and the data destinations.

Want to take Hevo for a spin? Sign up here for a 14-day free trial and experience the feature-rich Hevo suite first hand.

Share your experience of learning about the best JavaScript and Node.js Open Source ETL Tools in the comments section below!

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