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Mule Runtime Engine Overview

Mule runtime engine (Mule) is a lightweight integration engine that runs Mule applications and supports domains and policies. Mule applications, domains, and policies share an XML DSL (domain-specific language).

Mule Applications

Mule applications connect systems, services, APIs, and devices using API-led connectivity instead of point-to-point integrations. Mule applications provide functionality for message routing, data mapping, orchestration, reliability, security, and scalability.

Anypoint Studio supports Mule application development.

Mule Domains

Domains enable you to share global configurations that Mule applications need to reuse, such as default error handlers, shared properties, scheduler pools, and component configurations. You can only deploy domains when running Mule runtime engine on premises.

See Shared Resources for information about developing and configuring Mule domains by using Anypoint Studio.
See Deploy a Domain for domain deployment instructions.


Policies on HTTP-based APIs can enforce security, regulate traffic through Mule applications, and adapt APIs to your business needs.

Mule includes an embedded API Gateway, which enables you to apply security policies to an API, enrich incoming or outgoing messages, and add capabilities to an API without having to write any code.
See API Gateway Capabilities for additional information.

API Manager supports the configuration of automated policies. Custom policy development and configuration are also supported.

Maven Support

Maven is a project management utility that Mule implements to enhance project development. Mule provides built-in Maven functionality. For the Mule runtime engine, you can integrate the packaging, testing, and deployment of your Mule applications, domains, and custom policies with your Maven lifecycle using the Mule Maven plugin.

For details, see Maven Support in Mule.

Mule Installation, Deployment, and Management

For a Mule app to run, it must be deployed to an environment where the Mule runtime engine is installed.

Mule is packaged within the Studio IDE and with Design Center on Anypoint Platform so that you can run a Mule app as you design it.

MuleSoft provides different options for hosting the Anypoint Platform runtime plane:

  • CloudHub 2.0

    CloudHub 2.0 is a fully managed, containerized integration platform as a service (iPaaS) where you can deploy APIs and integrations as lightweight containers in the cloud.

    CloudHub 2.0 provides for deployments across 12 regions globally, either single or shared tenancy, and dynamically scales infrastructure and built-in services up or down to support elastic transaction volumes. See CloudHub 2.0 for more information.

  • CloudHub 1.0

    CloudHub is MuleSoft’s cloud-based environment for hosting the Mule runtime server and related services. CloudHub enables you to deploy an API or a Mule application on a platform that’s managed by MuleSoft.

    CloudHub also provides high availability, clustering and failover of your APIs and Mule applications and performs load balancing for them. See CloudHub for more information.

    CloudHub can be managed only by version of the cloud control plane that exists in the same environment (US cloud, EU cloud, or MuleSoft Government Cloud).

  • Runtime Fabric

    Runtime Fabric is a container service that enables you to run Mule applications and API gateways within a data center or third-party cloud environment that you control and manage. You can install Runtime Fabric on a set of physical servers, virtual machines, or within Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure.

    Runtime Fabric comes bundled with technology such as Docker and Kubernetes, which offer benefits such as high availability, failover, clustering, and load balancing. See Anypoint Runtime Fabric Overview for more information.

    Runtime Fabric can be managed only by Cloud control planes (US cloud, EU cloud). MuleSoft Government Cloud and Anypoint Platform PCE do not support Runtime Fabric.

  • Standalone Runtimes

    The standalone option enables you to host Mule runtime engine server and related services in an environment that you manage. Using standalone runtimes, the Mule runtime server can run on a physical server, a virtual machine, or within a third-party cloud installation like Amazon Web Services or Microsoft Azure.

    When using standalone runtimes, you are also responsible for providing the framework for high availability, failover, clustering and load balancing. See Run Mule Runtime Engine On-Premises.

    You can manage standalone runtimes by using cloud control planes (US Cloud, EU Cloud, MuleSoft Government Cloud) or a customer-hosted control plane (Anypoint Platform PCE).

In addition to using Runtime Manager, you can perform deployments and manage Mule apps with Anypoint CLI 3.x, which includes commands for deployments and a number of Anypoint Platform use cases.