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Scarf Splits Stealth

March 5, 2021

Scarf exited stealth and introdiced the Scarf Gateway, a secure central access point for software packages and containers independent of a host registry, offering better analytics, eliminating vendor lock-in and reducing switching costs without impacting users. The Scarf Gateway puts a project's distribution and usage data back in the creator’s control. With seed funding from Wave Capital, 468 Capital, Scott Belsky, Kevin Hartz and others, Scarf aims to shift the power dynamics of open-source by leading a new movement in open-source sustainability.

“Running the Data Science team at Airbnb, I relied heavily on the open-source community,” said Riley Newman, general partner at Wave Capital. “Scarf is a brilliant concept for a marketplace that will open up a new channel for enterprise SaaS, with developers able to get paid for the projects they're passionate about and companies able to receive custom support and ongoing maintenance for mission-critical software.”

Shifting the power dynamics in open-source

Founded by Avi Press and Tim Dysinger, Scarf is creating a world where open-source maintainers can proactively make data-informed decisions, and are fairly compensated for their work by connecting with and supporting their commercial users.

“We believe that the open-source community as a whole should not only be sharing source code, but also data about that source code and how it is used. To deliver better software, creators need a solution to distribute their software more effectively and with better observability,” said Avi Press, co-founder and CEO of Scarf. “We founded Scarf to do just that. Our goal is to empower open-source maintainers to own their package distribution, build better software and be financially supported for the work they create.”

With the launch of the Scarf Gateway, the company is providing developers with a secure, single access point for distributing open-source packages, no matter where they choose to host them.

Developers using the Scarf Gateway benefit from:

Better usage analytics: Most registries today provide and show only download counts for packages. The Scarf Gateway is breaking barriers by providing insight to developers on everything - downloads by version, platform, location, company, cloud environments and much more.

Hosting containers and packages on their own domain: Helping to permanently avoid vendor lock-in, distribution URLs stay static and under a developer’s control. Therefore, a developer can change out their registry provider as often as they’d like, without impacting users.

“The Scarf Gateway is the missing admin dashboard for our container hosting, making it easy to understand how quickly new versions of Linkerd are being adopted and which components are being deployed - data that the container registries have and don't share with us otherwise,” said Oliver Gould, co-founder and CTO at Buoyant. “It's awesome that Scarf can get this information into the hands of project maintainers without compromising the privacy of our users.”

"Scarf is positioned to have a huge impact on how open-source software is distributed and valued,” said Florian Leibert, co-founder of Mesosphere and general partner at 468 Capital. “We at 468 Capital are thrilled to be supporting their innovative products and important mission."

“Businesses are increasingly reliant on open-source and the people who build it,” said Chris Martin, advisor and former CTO of Pandora. “By ensuring maintainers can understand how their code is being used, Scarf is working to move our entire industry forward with improved software quality for everyone.”

The Scarf Gateway has initially launched with support for Docker containers, with more package types in the near future.

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