Limitations of Open source trading platform Tradelink? More coding and limitations but ….

(Last Updated On: February 11, 2013)
Learn the Secret

Get  our 2 Free Books

Get these now which land directly to their inbox.
Invalid email address

 Limitations of Open source trading platform Tradelink? More coding and limitations but ….

I do know about limiations of this platform. A message from an ex user of Tradelink via Youtube. My responses are followed by –>

Hey Bryan,

It’s good to see that you’ve finally moved on from ‘retail’ multicharts.

Just wanted to give you a heads up on the specific limitations of tradelink.

In the following link a member by the name of amazingIndustry debates the project maintainer of tradelink (whose handle is also tradelink) with regards to the specific limitation of the platform. Apparently the IB API is not stable? There are other interesting details revealed through the following exchange. The project maintainer sort of strikes me as a shady ‘promise everything to make the sale’ sales guy.

From the first post:

“Couple things why I personally stay away and coded up my own platform years ago:

1) Binary format they store ticks in is not very efficient, reading quotes back from file is very slow, nowhere close to the 5million ticks I process per second on historical data (and that includes the binary random access reads (can specify any start/end dates in between), deserialization, merging of several symbols to create a true market simulated feet (the stream is truly time sorted not first symbol then time when loading multi symbols). I have not seen even the capability in Tradelink to merge multi symbol data into one stream.


–> Source code helps here. Maybe MongoDB or Redis NOSQL for storage?

2) The profiling and backtest platform is different from the live trading one, which I personally really dislike. I can turn a switch to change from my historical data feed to real-time data and the quote streams flow through the architecture in the exactly same way (I use TPL Dataflow to link different dataflow blocks in a purely concurrent framework).


–> Great! More coding to slow me down.I want trade today not next century

3) They over advertise, they say they have a lot of adapters and interfaces to brokers but when really looking into those they severely lack. Its easy to say “hey we offer some sort of fix connectivity to IB” but when you look closely its nowhere close to even be usable for testing purpose let alone for trading purposes.


–> Yes FIX is no good but why do you think Fix8 exists for? Be part of the online Meetup for that.

4) Gui? No gui, no charts, no data grids, at least not what I would call it as such. So, if you get to run a backtest after all the hard work to get it up and running how do you profile the results? You still end up writing pretty much everything on your own.


–> So use a open source trading package like AIOTrade?Connect into the Interactive Brokers data feed. Also, I am not sure what you are expecting out of a GUI

For me the the time it would take to understand all the coding nuances and profitably peruse does not justify to mix and match it with the necessary extensions and code I would need to come up with to even get it up and running.


–> I never had a problems picking it up compared to Tradelinks QUickstart video guides are quite useful. Their community seems to help out as well.

Its only my 2cents, but to be honest I do not see the product taking off (have been following it for more than 1.5 years now) for the precise reasons above. I got the impression its used by those who actually developed it and maybe by some who paid to get all the wheels fixed to the car because they do not have in-house coders. The biggest problem I see with Tradelink is that the documentation and code is too opaque, it would take even experienced coders a life time to really easily integrate and continue where Tradelink hits the limits.


–> I don’t think 25000 user installs is to shake a stick at. For open source, that is pretty good.

My suggestion would be to look for a product (or submit the suggestion to Tradelink) to provide a ROCK SOLID basic platform (a way to stream historical and real time ticks at high throughputs into a strategy development container/framework) with some basic but solid way to output results to some sort of dashboard.) That is something that attracts people to continue adding their own bells and whistles (and would ultimately make people pay for it as well). ”


–> Matlab and Simulink could be that container in the future. Tradelink is just the starting point compare to the other open source trading platform I looked at.

Going back to comparing the other various platforms, if you run into problems with tradelink…

As far as broker connectivity goes:
Marketcetera supports quite a few brokers including BOA/Merrill Lynch, Currenex, IB, etc, however the cost is apparently 1k a month for the IB connectivity module….


–> I have seen it but there is no community, no updates, and $1800/month is not open source.

Algotrader supports IB, proper FIX support is still in development, though. There is also no gui. Also, to use it, effectively you would need to learn Esper EPL.

–> I play with it. Se my videos on Agotrader,
An exchange regarding Algotrader:

Another contender is the relatively new cyanspring ats:

Here’s an exchange regarding that platform:


–> Yet another Java open source trading platform. Maybe but I like mature platforms like Tradelink as well what gets me up and running quickly. Yes I hope Tradelink lives up to the task but I got the source code. Also, I  can no longer support Java unless you don’t know about the latest security Java 7 breaches.

Cyan Spring supports IB and FIX.


NOTE I now post my TRADING ALERTS into my personal FACEBOOK ACCOUNT and TWITTER. Don't worry as I don't post stupid cat videos or what I eat!
This entry was posted in Featured, HFT High Frequency Trading, Quant Development and tagged , , , , on by .

About caustic

Hi i there My name is Bryan Downing. I am part of a company called QuantLabs.Net This is specifically a company with a high profile blog about technology, trading, financial, investment, quant, etc. It posts things on how to do job interviews with large companies like Morgan Stanley, Bloomberg, Citibank, and IBM. It also posts different unique tips and tricks on Java, C++, or C programming. It posts about different techniques in learning about Matlab and building models or strategies. There is a lot here if you are into venturing into the financial world like quant or technical analysis. It also discusses the future generation of trading and programming Specialties: C++, Java, C#, Matlab, quant, models, strategies, technical analysis, linux, windows P.S. I have been known to be the worst typist. Do not be offended by it as I like to bang stuff out and put priorty of what I do over typing. Maybe one day I can get a full time copy editor to help out. Do note I prefer videos as they are much easier to produce so check out my many video at