Dynos: the heart of the Heroku platform

App developers rely on software abstractions to simplify development and enhance productivity. When it comes to running apps, containerization abstracts away the burden of managing hardware or virtual machines. Instead of hardware management, you deploy an app to Heroku, which packages the app’s code and dependencies into containers — lightweight, isolated environments that provide compute, memory, an OS, and an ephemeral filesystem. Containers are typically run on a shared host, yet are completely isolated from each other.

The Heroku Platform uses the container model to run and scale all Heroku apps. The containers used at Heroku are called “dynos.” Dynos are isolated, virtualized Linux containers that are designed to execute code based on a user-specified command. Your app can scale to any specified number of dynos based on its resource demands. Heroku’s container management capabilities provide you with an easy way to scale and manage the number, size, and type of dynos your app may need at any given time.

Dynos are the building blocks that power any Heroku app, from simple to sophisticated. Deploying to dynos, and relying on Heroku's dyno management, makes it easy for you to build and run flexible, scalable apps - freeing you from managing infrastructure, so you can focus on building and running great apps.

Learn more about how dynos work on Heroku

Buildtime: preparing code to run in a dyno

Heroku automates the build process, from the initial deploy to producing a “slug” - ready to be pushed to a dyno. Learn more >>

Runtime: configuring process and dyno types

Developers can optimize their app at runtime by breaking it down into different “process types” that determine what code runs in different dynos. Learn more >>

The dyno lifecycle

Heroku manages the dynos, and cycles dynos to maintain the health of all apps and the overall system. Learn more >>

Scaling apps with dynos

When an app needs to scale, Heroku makes it easy to change a dyno formation instantly. Learn more >>

Dynos in Heroku Private Spaces

High performance dynos in Private Spaces communicate directly with each other over a private network. Learn more >>

  • What’s great about Heroku is that all the heavy lifting happens behind the scenes. Heroku’s conceptual simplicity and ease of use greatly reduces friction in our development process and allows our team to be much more productive.

    AltSchool Bharat Mediratta Co-Founder and CTO, AltSchool Read customer story >>
  • Deployment is a breeze on the Heroku platform. Heroku gives our team the freedom to focus on developing a great product rather than on managing infrastructure.

    Contactually John Gerhardt Lead Engineer, Contactually Read customer story >>
  • It’s so easy to spin up dynos on Heroku and set up scaling during an 8-hour event. I can go from zero to ten dynos with a single API call.

    Lean Poker Rafael Ördög Founder, Lean Poker Read customer story >>