Improved Google Compute Engine now open for business

News Article - Tuesday, 21 May 2013 12:08

By: Kathryn Moody Category: Hosting

Google Compute Engine, the Google-made IaaS platform, is now generally available to any business or enterprise.

The announcement came at Google's sixth annual I/O conference, which also highlighted other cloud developments such as updates to App Engine and the creation of Cloud Datastore, a fully managed, scalable database service.

According to Computer Weekly , Google Compute Engine (GCE) was launched at the 2012 I/O conference, but had only been available for Beta testing by selected companies. Now, GCE is ready for open preview and available for open sign-up. Those interested simply have to head to for instructions on how to begin using the service.

GCE gives developers access to Google's computing infrastructure, Barak Regev, head of Google's cloud platform in EMEA, said .

"One of our main goals in building Google Compute Engine is to enable a new generation of applications with direct access to the capabilities of Google's vast computing infrastructure,” he added.

Over the course of Beta testing, Google introduced a number of improvements to GCE that make it "easier and more economical to use” according to the company blog , including sub-hour billing, increased disk support, and certified security.

Sub-hour billing charges for instances in one-minute increments with a ten-minute minimum "so you don't pay for compute minutes that you don't use”, according to the Google Enterprise blog. The blog also noted that disk support now includes up to 10 terabytes of volume, 10x the industry standard and an 8000% increase of current Persistent Disk size.

Google has also completed ISO 27001:2005 international security certification for GCE, App Engine, and Cloud Storage, demonstrating that those products meet an international standard for managing data security.

"This means when customers sign up to Google cloud, we are unlocking access to Google datacentres to them,” Regev said. "Enterprises get to use the same infrastructure that Google uses for its own web services.”

Other improvements include advanced routing capabilities built off of Google's software-defined network (SDN) strategy. These capabilities are designed to be able to configure instances to function as gateways, configure VPN servers and build applications that span local networks and Google's cloud.

Google is the third major cloud provider in the public cloud space along with Amazon Web Services and Microsoft. Microsoft launched its Azure Infrastructure services in April, while AWS was first launched in 2006.

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