GCP Digest Issue 1

1 June 2020
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Hello and welcome to the first issue of GCP Digest! GCP Digest tries to give you a gist of what happened in Google Cloud in the past two weeks. You are receiving this most likely because you downloaded my free ebooks on Gumroad (which are no longer free). A big thank you to those who paid for the books!

I recognize that most of you didn't sign up for this email explicitly, so feel free to unsubscribe at the bottom, no hard feelings, but also hope you don't get too mad.

Happy reading!
- Jon

Google Cloud Next will be OnAir!

Google Cloud Next this year (the annual conference for Google Cloud) will be held digitally via Next OnAir, a 9-week digital event starting July 14, every Tuesday. It features breakout sessions, learning and development, digital demos, and 1:1 with Google experts focusing on a new topic for each of the 9 weeks, e.g. Industry Insights, Infrastructure, Security, Data Analytics, and Cloud AI. It's FREE.

"Private" Cloud Functions

Serverless VPC Access has been generally available since December 2019, allowing Cloud Functions to reach into the private IP space of VPC networks, meaning that egress traffic from Cloud Functions into the VPC is allowed. GCP has announced advanced VPC support for controlling traffic in the opposite direction, namely that ingress traffic into Cloud Functions can also be controlled, effectively so that you can run "private" Cloud Functions.

BigQuery turns 10!

BigQuery turned 10 on May 21. Before BigQuery, it was a choice between a small RDBMS and MapReduce. Google found that MapReduce was too hard to use for complex problems, and so developed Sawzall to run on top of MapReduce as a simplification layer. But it wasn't interactive. Then they built Dremel, BigQuery's forerunner (or MVP, if you like). Internally, Googlers would just send queries to Dremel and not be responsible for any technical or operational backend (sounds familiar?). Anyway, so much for a history lesson. In conjunction with this milestone, you can purchase slots at a 95% discount while supplies last. There is also a new YouTube video series called BigQuery Spotlight.

Hourly Partitioning in BigQuery

BigQuery now allows hourly partitioned tables. It used to be able to only do DAY partitioning. No longer. Great for continuous incoming data streams, and great for cost savings. However, there is still a minimum 10 MB data processed per query. I'm patiently waiting for this minimum to go away, and then suddenly we get a serverless "RDMBS" service, woohoo!

Java 11 available in Cloud Functions

You can now write your Cloud Functions in Java 11. Now in beta, you can even use your favorite JVM languages such as Kotlin, Groovy, and Scala.

Cloud SQL Postgres 12 in GA, 8 new extensions

Cloud SQL has added eight additional PostgreSQL extensions:

  • pageinspect
  • pgfincore
  • pg_freespacemap
  • pg_repack
  • pg_visibility
  • PL/Proxy
  • postgres_fdw
  • postgresql-hll
Additionally, PostgreSQL version 12 is now generally available.

Google Cloud Architecture Framework

You've heard of the AWS Well-Architected framework. Now, GCP is not left behind with its own Google Cloud Architecture Framework. It describes best practices, makes implementation recommendations, and goes into detail about products and services. It covers system design considerations, operational excellence, security, privacy, & compliance, reliability, performance, and cost optimization. If you ask me, here's your cheat sheet for the Professional Cloud Architect exam.

Firebase Emulator UI, UI for your Firebase Emulators

What if I told you that you could emulate Firebase's Firestore, Realtime Database, Functions, Hosting, and PubSub, etc.? Well that's not new. What's new is that Firebase has announced an Emulator UI, a local(host) web app that allows you to manage and view local emulators that you would usually start from your CLI. Now you can develop locally entirely without creating a development project in Firebase? I wonder if I can use this to develop vanilla Cloud Functions too... 

Google Cloud VMWare Engine

Google Cloud VMware Engine is an integrated first-party offering with end-to-end support to migrate and run your VMware environment in Google Cloud. This offering will allow you to extend or migrate your on-premises workloads to Google Cloud within minutes by connecting a dedicated VMWare environment directly through Cloud Console. You can seamlessly migrate to the cloud without the cost or complexity of refactoring application, as well as run and manage workloads in a consistent way as with on-premises. Looks like another attack on the enterprise front, and a great alternative to Anthos, while meeting customers at where they exactly are (probably not using containers).

Cassandra as a Service is in GA

You can now run Apache Cassandra in managed fashion in Google Cloud. DataStax’s Cassandra as a Service, called Astra, is now available in GA on the Google Cloud Marketplace. While it is provided by a third-party (DataStax), all billing is integrated with GCP and you only see your GCP bill. Check out the blog post.

Beta? GA?

Entered GA Entered Beta

(Excellent) Bunch of links

TWiGCP (This Week in GCP) contains a comprehensive list of links if you want to tune in to all the details and blog posts of everything that happened in GCP and in the surrounding ecosystem. I won't duplicate effort, check out TWiGCP from previous weeks: And if you missed it, I published a blog post on how to Run a Postgres instance for cheap in Google Cloud, from $4-6/month. 

See you next time!

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