IronMQ vs MQ on Ruby on Rails

Messaging systems are critical for keeping data flowing in a business. But should it run on Ruby or on Iron?


  1. IronMQ and Ruby on Rails are wildly different software systems, making them difficult to compare. IronMQ is a messaging system, while Rails requires some tinkering to do the same.
  2. Rails is open-source, IronMQ is subscription-based.
  3. Iron has a steep initial learning curve that evens out. Rails is easy to learn but ups the difficulty later.
  4. IronMQ beats Rails in flexibility and scalability.

Find out how IronMQ stands up to other messaging systems, and request a demo for your business.

As the modern world embraces technology, our demand for data increases. Businesses need a way to handle data despite differences in programs, languages, and operating systems. This is where a messaging system comes in: it handles the data processing between programs in the background so other processes run smoothly. Messaging systems have many uses that make them a vital addition to any software stack.

IronMQ vs MQ on Ruby on Rails: Features & Benefits

IronMQ vs MQ on Ruby on Rails

Comparing IronMQ to Rails is more like comparing apples and bananas. They’re different concepts designed for different purposes, so a direct comparison is difficult.


Rails is not a messaging system, but a framework for working within the Ruby language. It can be made to work with other messaging queues like IronMQ, but other popular options are RabbitMQ and Websphere MQ. The messaging system becomes a feature of the Rails framework rather than the main function.

By contrast, IronMQ is a dedicated messaging system developed by Iron. They boast one of the fastest messaging systems on the market, but their biggest selling point is that it’s designed as a global cloud-based service. Its use of multiple availability zones keeps IronMQ running smoothly in case of local failure. It also makes IronMQ scalable for any size business.


IronMQ and Rails have the same capabilities. They both enable data sharing between programs via messaging queues and allow for asynchronous messaging. The key difference lies in how to do this. While Rails requires some additional code and assembly to get a message queue going, IronMQ is designed for the task from day one.


With Rails, you’re limited to using Ruby. IronMQ is “language agnostic,” meaning it’s much more flexible and can work with any coding language.

IronMQ vs MQ on Ruby on Rails: Pricing

Rails is open-source, meaning it’s free to use.

IronMQ comes with a subscription, but there are a variety of packages to choose from. Packages range from hobbyist up to enterprise level and start at $24.99 a month, so the ideal package for your business will vary. There’s also a 14-day free trial and a discount for paying annually instead of monthly. 

IronMQ vs MQ on Ruby on Rails: Reviews

Reviews for these two are, again, difficult to compare as the fundamental systems are so different.

IronMQ has a 4.3 out of 5 star review on Capterra. Users especially like IronMQ’s speed, scalability, and flexibility, owing to its multi-cloud structure. Users noted an initial learning curve when it came to implementing the software, but it proved itself to be powerful and reliable in time.

Ruby on Rails remains highly popular in spite of its age. It has an overwhelmingly positive score on Slant, with users taking note of the large support community. This is the advantage of an open-source framework existing for over fifteen years. However, other users note that the learning curve is the opposite of IronMQ – while it’s easy to work with at first, it becomes steeper once you dive in.

IronMQ vs MQ on Ruby on Rails


While Ruby can be a good choice for a small-time hobbyist, IronMQ is the better choice for a business with plans to grow. IronMQ is the more flexible and scalable choice that won’t leave developers limited by language or software constraints.

Learn more about IronMQ and pricing options, or Request a Demo today.

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