Metrist raises $5.5M for eBPF-based cloud monitoring

Metrist, a startup with DevOps roots, raises $5.5M to help companies to deal with cloud services outages. Metrist was founded by two DevOps veterans, Jeff Martens and Ryan Duffield, whose past experience includes working for New Relic, PagerDuty and similar observability and monitoring companies.

Metrist Founders
Metrist Founders, Image Credit: Metrist

Metrist’s idea is not very original: negotiate outages that vendors’ SLAs do not cover. Surprisingly, there are not too many competitors in this area. Some competition for Metrist’s business comes from Parametric Insurance, which sells insurance policies that include cloud and CDN outages.

In contrast to selling insurance, Metrist is willing to play the role of the trusted arbiter in negotiating outage outcomes with vendors and the affected company.

One of the interesting parts of this story is that according to TechCrunch report Metrist team plans to run an eBPF agent to gather data services a customer runs. There are a few issues associated with this technical approach:

  1. Metrist is going to miss all container deployments, e.g. ECS at AWS or any K8s+dockers infrastructure. It is quite a big part of cloud infrastructure that Metrist won’t be able to observe with eBPF-based agents.
  2. On top of that, eBPF can not see into Serverless deployments, e.g. AWS Lambda-s. This further reduces the world of apps that Metrist can monitor.
  3. And there is a third factor that limits Metrist scale-up: most enterprises become very suspicious once they are asked to run yet another agent on their cloud VM or a barrel metal machine. While companies like PageDuty or New Relic have already overcome this psychological barrier by being on the market for long enough, it still could be a showstopper for a young startup that needs to prove itself to its customers.

Having said this, we wish the Metrist’s team all the success.