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The 10 Best Open Source Projects for Workflow Orchestration and Automation

Posted on:March 17, 2024

in today’s fast-paced digital landscape, businesses constantly seek ways to streamline their operations, automate repetitive tasks, and optimize their workflows. Fortunately, the open-source community has developed a plethora of powerful tools and platforms that enable organizations to achieve these goals without breaking the bank. In this blog post, we will explore some of the most popular open-source workflow orchestration and automation tools, including Apache Airflow, Prefect, Dagster, Luigi, Argo Workflows, n8n, and Node-RED.


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n8n is a free and source-available workflow automation tool

n8n is a fair-code licensed automation tool that allows connecting different services, APIs, and devices to create powerful workflows. It provides a user-friendly interface for designing and automating workflows without requiring extensive programming knowledge. n8n supports a wide range of integrations, enabling users to connect various tools and services seamlessly. It offers features like error handling, conditional execution, and data transformation, making it a versatile tool for automating tasks and workflows.

Verdict (8/10)


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Node-RED is a programming tool for wiring together hardware devices, APIs and online services in new and interesting ways. It provides a browser-based editor that makes it easy to wire together flows using the wide range of nodes in the palette that can be deployed to its runtime in a single-click.

Node-RED is an open-source, flow-based programming tool for wiring together hardware devices, APIs, and online services. It provides a browser-based editor for creating workflows by connecting pre-built nodes or creating custom ones. Node-RED is widely used in IoT, home automation, and service integration scenarios. It offers a large library of community-contributed nodes, enabling users to extend its functionality easily. With its visual programming approach and rich ecosystem, Node-RED simplifies the process of building and deploying workflows across various domains.

Verdict (6/10)


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Use declarative language to build simpler, faster, scalable and flexible data pipelines

Kestra is an open-source, distributed workflow orchestration platform. It allows you to build, schedule, and monitor complex workflows and data pipelines. Kestra provides a web UI and API to design and manage workflows as code. It supports integrations with various systems and offers features like parallel execution, resuming failed tasks, and versioning. Kestra aims to make it easier to create reliable, scalable workflows for data processing and automation.

Verdict (8/10)


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Create agents that monitor and act on your behalf. Your agents are standing by! - huginn/huginn

Huginn is a free and open-source automation platform that enables users to create agents that monitor and act on events. It allows building flexible workflows by configuring autonomous agents that can perform various tasks. Huginn agents can watch for events, fetch data, transform information, and take actions based on specified rules. The platform provides a web interface to create, manage, and interconnect agents using a drag-and-drop workflow editor. Huginn aims to empower users to automate repetitive tasks, data collection, and reactions to events without relying on external services.

Verdict (3/10):


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Platform created by the community to programmatically author, schedule and monitor workflows.

Apache Airflow is an open-source platform for programmatically authoring, scheduling, and monitoring workflows. It provides a rich user interface to visualize pipelines running in production, monitor progress, and troubleshoot issues. Airflow uses directed acyclic graphs (DAGs) to define workflows and supports a wide range of integrations with various tools and services. It offers a robust and scalable solution for data pipeline orchestration and automation.

Verdict (4/10):


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Prefect is a workflow orchestration tool to build, observe, and react to data pipelines.

Prefect is a modern workflow management system that emphasizes ease of use, flexibility, and observability. It allows users to define workflows using Python and provides a powerful set of tools for building, running, and monitoring data pipelines. Prefect supports both local and cloud-based execution, making it suitable for various environments. It offers features like task retries, data caching, and real-time monitoring to ensure reliable and efficient workflow execution.

Verdict (5/10)


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The cloud-native open source orchestrator for the whole development lifecycle, with integrated lineage and observability, a declarative programming model, and best-in-class testability.

Dagster is a data orchestrator that enables defining and executing data pipelines with a focus on data quality and asset management. It provides a unified view of data assets, allowing users to track and manage data dependencies across pipelines. Dagster offers a type system for data, making it easier to ensure data integrity and consistency. It supports a wide range of integrations and provides a flexible and modular architecture for building data-intensive applications.

Verdict (4/10)


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Luigi is a Python module that helps you build complex pipelines of batch jobs. It handles dependency resolution, workflow management, visualization etc. It also comes with Hadoop support built in. ...

Luigi is a Python package developed by Spotify that helps build complex pipelines of batch jobs. It handles dependency resolution, workflow management, and visualization. Luigi allows users to define tasks and their dependencies, making it easier to create and maintain large-scale data pipelines. It provides a command-line interface and a web interface for monitoring and managing workflows. Luigi is highly extensible and can be integrated with various data sources and targets.

Not recently tested.


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Argo Workflows is an open source container-native workflow engine for orchestrating parallel jobs on Kubernetes. Argo Workflows is implemented as a Kubernetes CRD (Custom Resource Definition).

Argo Workflows is a container-native workflow engine for orchestrating parallel jobs on Kubernetes. It provides a YAML-based domain-specific language (DSL) for defining workflows and a web-based user interface for managing and monitoring them. Argo Workflows supports features like parameter substitution, artifacts, and resource templates, making it highly flexible and customizable. It enables users to run complex computational workflows, machine learning pipelines, and data processing tasks efficiently on Kubernetes clusters.

Verdict (5/10)


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Kedro is a toolbox for production-ready data science. It uses software engineering best practices to help you create data engineering and data science pipelines that are reproducible, maintainable,...


In conclusion, the open-source workflow orchestration and automation landscape offers a wide array of powerful tools that cater to diverse needs and use cases. Apache Airflow, Prefect, Dagster, Luigi, Argo Workflows, n8n, and Node-RED are just a few examples of the impressive solutions available to streamline workflows, automate tasks, and optimize processes.

These tools empower organizations to break free from manual, time-consuming tasks and focus on higher-level objectives. By leveraging the capabilities of these open-source platforms, businesses can achieve increased efficiency, reduced errors, and improved scalability. Whether you’re dealing with complex data pipelines, IoT workflows, or general automation requirements, there’s an open-source tool that can help you achieve your goals.