The 10 Hottest DevOps Startups Of 2018 (So Far)

These 10 DevOps startups are creating the tools solution providers need to deliver the high-velocity software development and deployment capabilities their enterprise customers are clamoring for.

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DevOps is a broad term -- one that encompasses an organizational culture and methodology that goes well beyond any specific product or platform.

Facilitating such modern processes are innovative startups creating the tools partners need to deliver the high-velocity software development and deployment capabilities their enterprise customers are clamoring for.

Many of these young companies are scaling their businesses rapidly by enabling automated infrastructure configuration, agile software development, continuous integration and deployment, container management, and security operations across the application life cycle.

Such products merging software development and operations at scale make possible the modern application landscape that's revolutionizing how large organizations work and engage with customers.

These are the startups powering the shift to a DevOps world.

(For more on the biggest news of 2018, check out "CRN's Tech Midyear In Review.")


CEO: Rahul Ravulur

AppOrbit, a startup founded by VMware and IBM veterans, came out of stealth last year with an application modernization platform geared for enterprises looking to avoid costly redevelopment projects.

The San Jose, Calif.-based startup offers a runtime environment that can repurpose almost any application to be tested and deployed in a DevOps-geared environment.

AppOrbit's platform works across application types, from three-tier to micro-services; cloud-native to legacy. The platform can strip down those applications and reconfigure them with attributes that satisfy the needs of modern enterprises: on-demand, self-healing, portable, scalable and secure.


CEO: Rahul Singh

This startup became a subsidiary of Puppet, another DevOps stalwart, last year, and has since been expanding its capabilities.

Just a few weeks after acquiring the continuous delivery specialist, Puppet presented three new Distelli products focused on application automation and container deployment.

Based in Seattle, Distelli's Software-as-a-Service solution can pull code from any source or repository and deploy it to a wide variety of infrastructure environments, including the public cloud.


CEO: Dave McJannet

The San Francisco-based startup, founded in a college dorm room, has developed a broad portfolio of tools for provisioning, securing and running the infrastructure that hosts distributed applications.

Terraform, Vault, Nomad, Consul, Packer, and Vagrant are now staples in the enterprise, and go-to tools for many DevOps-minded solution providers.

The rapid adoption of HashiCorp's open-source and commercial products spurred the company last year to introduce its first channel program in a bid to cement enterprise relationships and build new ones.


CEO: Craig McLuckie

Two of the engineers who worked on development of Kubernetes at Google founded Heptio in 2016 to improve the experience of using that container orchestration technology.

The Seattle-based startup, founded in 2016, has delivered tools that ensure proper configuration and recovery of Kubernetes clusters when failures occur, helping reduce costs when deploying containers at scale.

Heptio also offers Kubernetes training and professional services.

Unlike some other Kubernetes-focused vendors, Heptio offers a distribution that doesn't diverge much from the upstream version of the technology so as to maximize compatibility.


CEO: Florian Leibert

Mesosphere was founded by the creators of the open-source Mesos container orchestrator, but the San Francisco-based startup has brought to market a comprehensive platform that incorporates and integrates several underlying container technologies and big data frameworks.

The company's container operations and data services platform, the Mesosphere Datacenter Operating System, or DC/OS, can quickly deploy open-source solutions at production scale that automate application delivery, manage containers, and crunch large data sets.

DC/OS makes hybrid cloud resources function as a unified environment supporting a broad set of data-intensive workloads.


CEO: Joe Duffy

Pulumi, founded last year in Seattle, focuses on enabling DevOps teams to deploy code rapidly, and collaboratively, in the cloud.

The startup's open-source and extensible platform offers frameworks and libraries that define, deploy and manage cloud services.

DevOps teams can use Pulumi to implement a consistent approach to building and managing cloud-native software, whether they're working with containers, serverless infrastructure, virtual machines or APIs.

Rancher Labs

CEO: Sheng Liang

Rancher Labs offers an open-source solution for managing container deployments at enterprise scale. Rancher's container platform aims to make it easier for DevOps teams to test, deploy, secure and manage applications, typically built with micro-services architectures, across all environments.

Initially agnostic to the underlying container orchestration technology, Rancher last year entirely committed to Kubernetes. The company now focuses on bringing to market a solution for managing clusters orchestrated by any Kubernetes distribution, including its own, across on-premises and cloud environments.


CEO: Marc Chenn

SaltStack's systems management tools, built from Salt open-source configuration management software, are a popular choice for enterprise cloud and DevOps organizations.

The startup's enterprise solutions deliver server configuration, data center automation, and cloud orchestration across complex, heterogenous environments, and embed event-driven security throughout those processes.


President: Dhrupad Trivedi

Tripwire brings security to DevOps by scanning online, offline and non-running Docker containers throughout the DevOps life cycle.

The Tripwire Container Analyzer Service can perform comprehensive vulnerability analysis of Docker images, systematically approving or preventing further use of them.

That service combines with continuous integration and continuous deployment tools to perform vulnerability scanning at each step along the containerization process.


CEO: Derek Langone

XebiaLabs, one of the first application release automation vendors, has leveraged the channel to rapidly scale its business.

The Burlington, Mass.-based enterprise software company has developed several products, including its flagship XebiaLabs DevOps platform for intelligence, automation and control of continuous delivery processes at scale.

The platform provides the backbone for DevOps release automation, complements existing tools, and enables full visibility across the entire software delivery process.

New XL Deploy and XL Release versions offer enhancements including assessment analytics, code-centric management capabilities and broader integration support.