Cloud is a significant technological development and is being adopted by large enterprises as well as small businesses. Its adoption makes a lot of sense since it simplifies things and also makes them more secure at reasonable costs.
Google cloudis one of the major options available and among the most well-known.
This is the first among a series of articles that we expect to write on Google cloud.
What is Google Cloud?
Google’s cloud platform provides reliable and highly scalable infrastructure for developers to build, test and deploy apps. It covers application, storage and computing services for backend, mobile and web solutions. More than four million apps trust and use the platform.
Google tries to keep the backend as simple as possible and uses a simple file system. This system is the foundation of the Google cloud platform. It handles requests for information via basic commands like write, read and open. It is a distributed system of computing.
The file system comprises of networks which are also known as clusters. One master server is allocated to each cluster. The system co-ordinates data requests through these master servers. Users’ actions get translated into data requests when they interact with the cloud and the information stored on it. Writing or formatting new data or other simpler actions like viewing a file are among these data requests.
The user’s computer sends data requests to other computers and acts like a client. The Google computer that has the data receives a message from the master server that takes the request. The computers that have the data are known as chunk servers. The information requested does not pass through a master server and is sent directly to the client from the chunk server.
It is a little complicated to make changes to data in the cloud since Google keeps a number of copies of every piece of data. A master server receives a write request, first of all. The server selects the chunk server that has the appropriate data. This is known as the primary chunk server replica. The client comes to know of the locations of all replica chunk servers through the master server.
When the user makes any changes, those get conveyed to the first replica chunk server that the user’s computer can connect to. Then, the change request travels through the system to all chunk server replicas, including the primary one. The primary chunk server makes the change and instructs all replicas to do the same.
For example, you can leverage Google cloud and the application programming interface (API) for MS Office to have several people edit a document at the same time. You can start saving files to the cloud after you install a plugin for the MS Office program suite. Everyone can then use and edit the cloud copy of the file, which becomes the master document. Google cloud assigns a unique URL to each file. However, the owner or creator of the document has to designate someone as an editor before they can download and start editing the file in MS Office.
If anyone makes changes to the document, the changes will be visible to all those the document is shared with. When many people make changes to the same content, Google cloud allows the document owner or creator to select the changes to keep.
Google cloud inserts metadata into a file, when it is uploaded to the service. This helps to identify the file and track changes across all copies. As the documents get synchronized to the master file, Google cloud updates all downloaded documents using metadata to update the right files.
Advantages of Google Cloud
- Higher Productivity is gained through Quick Access to Innovation: Google’s systems can distribute updates efficiently and deliver functionality on a weekly basis or even faster.
- Less Disruption is Caused When Users Adopt New Functionality: Rather than large disruptive batches of change, Google delivers manageable improvements in a continuous stream.
- Employees Can Work From Anywhere: They can gain full access to information across devices from anywhere in the world through web based apps powered by Google cloud.
- Google Cloud Allows Quick Collaboration: Many users can contribute to and access projects at the same time as data is stored on the cloud instead of their computers.
- Customers are protected by Google’s Investments in Security: They are benefited by the process-based and physical security investments made by Google. Google hires the leading security experts in the world.
- Less Data has to be stored on Vulnerable Devices: Minimal data is stored on computers that may get compromised, after a user stops using web based apps on the cloud.
- Customers get Higher Uptime and Reliability: If a data center is not available for some reason, the system immediately falls back on the secondary center without any service interruption being visible to users.
- Control and Flexibility Available to Users: They have control over technology and data and have ownership over their data in Google apps. If they decide not to use the service any more, they can get their data out of Google cloud.
- Google’s Economies of Scale Let Customers Spend Less: Google minimizes overheads and consolidates a small number of server configurations. It manages these through an efficient ratio of people to computers.
Products offered by Google Cloud
- Compute Engine
- App Engine
- Cloud SQL
- Cloud Storage
- Cloud Datastore
- Cloud Endpoints
This is Google’s infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS). Through this, Google’s infrastructure can be used to run workloads on a large scale on virtual machines. You can select a virtual computer to fit your needs and enjoy the consistence and performance of Google’s network worldwide. You have to pay only for what you use, since the billing is per minute.
- Security and Compliance
- Easy and Fast Provisioning
- Balancing of Loads
- High-Performance Virtual Computers
For more details, please refer to: https://cloud.google.com/products/compute-engine/#features.
This is a platform-as-a-service (PaaS). Gain productivity by using in-built services to develop your apps. You just have to download the software development kit (SDK) to start development work immediately and for free.
- Google Scale Deployment
- Known Development Tools
- Strong In-Built Services
- Many Options for Storage
- Code Focus
- Popular Frameworks and Languages
For more details, please refer to: https://cloud.google.com/products/app-engine/#features.
This is a relational MySQL database that is fully managed and helps manage and store data. To ensure performance and availability, Google takes care of database management, patch management and replication.
- Completely Managed
- Easy to Control
- Simpler Migration Without Lock-In
- Robustness, Accessibility, Security
- Pay Per Use and Package Charging
- Standard Infrastructure
For more details, please refer to: https://cloud.google.com/products/cloud-sql/#features.
This is an object storage service that is highly available and durable. Users can quickly access data from your app from anywhere, on account of edge-caching on a global scale. Google presents a simple application programming interface (API), provides a strong service-level agreement and runs versioning to let you handle data programmatically.
- Variable Access
- Storage of Objects with Feature-Rich API
- Adjustable and Viable Pricing
- Safe and Secure
For more details, please refer to: https://cloud.google.com/products/cloud-storage/#features.
This provides a database, which is schemaless, NoSQL and managed, for storage of non-relational data. SQL-like queries are supported well, in addition to transactions, and the datastore also scales as required.
- Anywhere Access of Data
- Local Tools for Development
- In-built Redundancy
- ACID Transactions
- Scaling Automatically with Users
- Database Management
- SQL-Like Querying and Schemaless Access
For more details, please refer to: https://cloud.google.com/products/cloud-datastore/#features.
This is to analyze big data in the cloud. This can process datasets containing several terabytes in a few seconds and run quick SQL-like queries. This provides insights in real time and is simple and scalable to use.
- Suitable Interface
- Economical Big Data
- Easy Import of Data
- Queries Executed in Background
For more details, please refer to: https://cloud.google.com/products/bigquery/#features.
Google also provides developer tools such as Google Plugin for Eclipse, Google Cloud SDK, Android Studio, Cloud Playground and Push-to-Deploy, along with the cloud platform.
- Integration of client side becomes flexible
- Client server maintenance is low
- App engine infrastructure can be extended
- Several clients, single tool
For more details, please refer to: https://cloud.google.com/products/cloud-endpoints/#features
Future of Google Cloud
Google’s approach and its entire strategy appears focused on the future and not the internet as it exists at present. Google seems to have placed its bet on the world having ubiquitous and low-cost internet access in the near future. This could include fast mobile broadband available globally and fiber connections in homes and offices.
Google seems to be building cloud for that kind of a world. It expects that by the time it refines its stack of apps, broadband will be available worldwide. It’s required as Google’s apps depend on internet connection and most of the data is stored on Google’s cloud servers.
However, the future of broadband may not be exactly in accordance with Google’s expectations. At many places, it is not financially viable to introduce high-speed internet access, solely on the basis of free market forces. This could remain true for a long time to come.
For Google’s vision to be realized, there will have to be greater competition in the bigger markets and more substantial private-public partnerships in smaller ones.
Google cloud has had tremendous impact, especially in the world of web and mobile app development, where it has made things simpler and easier for developers. However, its dependence on connectivity with the internet may hinder its progress somewhat in the future.
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