MQTT Hosting, Brokers and Servers

mqtt-brokersWhen it comes to hosting an MQTT broker/server you have three main options:

  • Use you Own Locally Installed Server
  • Use a Cloud Based Sever or Virtual Server
  • Use a Shared Server Application

Own Server

You can install an MQTT broker on your own server hardware.

There are many brokers/servers to choose from and most are free and open source.

Each of these brokers will have their own requirements e.g Mosca is Node.js based and so requires node.js to be installed.

Broker Description
Mosquitto Lightweight open source broker written in C. Probably the most popular MQTT broker. Website

Install instructions Windows and Linux


Mosca Mosca is Node.js based and so requires node.js to be installed.See GitHub

It can also be installed as a node in node-red.

It is not very feature rich when compared to mosquitto.


Written in Erlang is Open Source and described as massively scalable. EMQ Implements both MQTT V3.1 and V3.1.1 protocol specifications, and supports MQTT-SN, CoAP, WebSocket, STOMP . See Github
Python Test Broker Python test brokers including MQTT v5

The problem with this arrangement is that you are responsible for the installation, and maintenance of the hardware and software.

This is likely to be the main choice for local MQTT applications.

Many of the cloud based MQTT service providers also use these brokers.

Cloud Based Server or Virtual Server

These are available from many providers and are currently mainly used for website hosting.

However they can be used for hosting any web application, and will be a popular choice for hosting  Node.js and MQTT.

With this type of hosting you aren’t responsible for the hardware, but software install and management is your responsibility.

Online or cloud based MQTT servers/brokers are likely to be used for connecting different physical geographic locations together.

Google,Amazon,Microsoft,IBM and many others provide clod based hosting.

Managed MQTT Server

This is similar to cloud servers except you are limited to hosting a single application- MQTT.

This is the way present day websites are hosted.

This form of hosting is preferred for small organisations as the software install and maintenance is done by the hosting company.

Just as with standard web hosting there are likely to be a wide range of options available for MQTT hosting

Because the market is still very new there are very few dedicated commercial MQTT hosting providers.

Here are the ones I am currently aware of. AT the moment many are used for trialing MQTT but a view offer commercial packages.

 Online Cloud Base MQTT brokers/Servers

Broker Type Broker Address and Port Websocket Support SSL support



Encrypted port 8081

Un-encrypted 8080

Yes 8883 With Client certificate 8884




Mosquitto  Yes

80 and 443 (SSL)



cloudmqtt set when you create a new instance  Yes  Yes


See Creating an MQTT Broker With CloudMQTT and this video

Moving MQTT Providers

Because MQTT brokers don’t really store messages long term (unlike email) moving providers should be relatively easy.

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