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The architecture of a large complex software system, i.e., the division of the system into components and modules, is crucial since it often affects and limits the quality attributes of the system, e.g., performance and maintainability. In this paper we evaluate three software components for intra- and inter-process communication in a distributed real-time system, i.e., an automated guided vehicle system. We evaluate three quality attributes: performance, maintainability, and portability. The performance and maintainability are evaluated quantitatively using prototype-based evaluation, while the portability is evaluated qualitatively. Our findings indicate that it might be possible to use one third-party component for both intra- and inter-process communication, thus replacing two in-house developed components.