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An Inside Look at Google's Container Engine

Google Container Engine is an enterprise-oriented container management service meant to assist in managing cloud-based activities. Meant to virtualize the process of general workload management within the cloud, containers actually grant various, isolated and individualized user instances. From the end-user's viewpoint, however, the instances maintain the appearance of one continuous, physical server.

While some container engines are meant for general usage, Google Container Engine was built for use with Docker containers. A highly flexible and versatile container, Docker containers are, essentially, virtualized servers that are utilized when deploying cloud-based applications.

To accomplish this, Google Container Engine utilizes an open source network of clustered Linux-based containers known as Kubernetes. Apart from offering a dynamic and portable system, Google Container Engine can be deployed in public, private and hybrid cloud environments.

"Most customers live in a multi-cloud world, using both on-premises and public cloud infrastructures to host their applications. With Red Hat, Microsoft, IBM, Mirantis OpenStack, and VMware - and the list keeps growing - integrating Kubernetes into their platforms, you’ll be able to move workloads, or take advantage of multiple cloud providers, more easily. Container Engine and Kubernetes provide you with flexibility, whether you use on-premises, hybrid, or public cloud infrastructure." Google stated in a recent blog post.

Pricing Options

The costs of Google Container Engine can vary greatly depending on a number of factors, including your type of machine, total memory and more. A detailed pricing guide can be found at https://cloud.google.com/compute/pricing.

Google relies on a simple and straightforward pricing scheme regarding cluster management. By charging a flat fee per hour per cluster, they're able to keep costs down on behalf of customers while still providing the amount of service needed in each specific case. Users are grant five nodes per cluster at no additional cost. Up to 2,000 nodes can be added into a cluster at a price of $0.15 per hour. These costs are in addition to those of Google Container service, which is detailed in the above pricing guide.

Lachlan Evenson with Lithium Cloud Platform Engineering has used Google Container Engine firsthand. He was recently quoted as saying: "When we implemented our new, microservice-based container architecture, we chose Kubernetes because we needed a single, simple, standardized runtime platform that we could easily and quickly deploy across multiple environments. We use Container Engine in conjunction with our own infrastructure and other public clouds to diversify our infrastructure risk."

The Future of Kubernetes

Interestingly enough, Kunbernetes is already being utilized in a number of other projects. It was recently showcased in the hit video game "Pokemon GO," and it's also being integrated into new initiatives by Microsoft, IBM, VMware, Red Hat, Marantis and others. This could pave the way for the crossover of workloads between separate cloud platforms as well as the ability to work inside multiple cloud environments at one time.

More Information

For more information regarding Google Container Engine, please visit their official web portal at https://cloud.google.com/container-engine/. Conversely, those who are interested in finding out more about Kubernetes can do so by viewing their website at www.kubernetes.io.

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