Apache Livy

What is Apache Livy?

Apache Livy is an open-source REST service for Apache Spark. It allows for the creation of interactive and remote Spark sessions, making it easier to execute Spark jobs, applications, and interactive queries from web-based interfaces or REST clients.


Livy was originally developed by Cloudera and open-sourced under the auspices of the Apache Software Foundation. Since its inception, it has evolved into a leading solution for managing Spark sessions, with contributions from a wide variety of organizations.

Functionality and Features

Apache Livy provides several critical features for managing Apache Spark jobs:

  • Easy Interaction with Spark: Livy presents a simple way to interact with Spark through REST clients, supporting both batch and interactive jobs.
  • Session Management: Livy provides session management for Spark, allowing multiple users to share the same Spark session or to have their isolated sessions.
  • Highly Scalable: With Livy, it is possible to scale Spark computations horizontally by adding more nodes to the cluster as needed.


Livy functions as a proxy between the REST API and Spark, managing and distributing Spark contexts among users. Its architecture includes a REST server, session manager, and interpreter.

Benefits and Use Cases

The primary benefits of Apache Livy include:

  • Increased Productivity: By enabling interactive Spark sessions, Livy can boost productivity for data scientists and developers.
  • Simplified Spark Management: Livy simplifies Spark job management by providing a unified platform for controlling both batch and interactive jobs.

Use cases for Livy span industries, from retail to finance, particularly any scenario requiring interactive data analysis or distributed data processing with Spark.

Challenges and Limitations

While Apache Livy is powerful, it has limitations such as dependency on a stable REST API which, if unstable, can affect Livy's performance. Moreover, managing resources efficiently across multiple users can be challenging.

Integration with Data Lakehouse

Livy can operate in a data lakehouse environment where it can be used to manage Spark sessions, making it easier for data scientists and developers to execute and manage their Spark jobs and applications.

Security Aspects

Livy ensures security through user impersonation, allowing authenticated users to submit jobs and access data on behalf of others.


Apache Livy does not directly influence Apache Spark performance. However, it can aid in efficiently managing resources and simplifying session setup, indirectly impacting performance.


What is Apache Livy? Apache Livy is an open-source REST service for Apache Spark that simplifies the execution of Spark jobs, applications, and interactive queries.

What are the benefits of using Apache Livy? Using Apache Livy can increase productivity, simplify Spark job management, and provide a unified platform for controlling both batch and interactive jobs.


Apache Spark: A cluster-computing framework for real-time processing.

REST API: An application programming interface (API) that utilizes HTTP requests to perform functions.

Data Lakehouse: A hybrid data management platform that combines the features of a data warehouse and data lake.

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