Google took its sweet time entering this corner of the cloud. While Amazon, Rackspace, and others started off with pay-as-you-go Linux boxes and other “infrastructure” services, Google began with the Google App Engine, a nice stack of Python that held your hand and did much of the work for you. Now Google is heading in the more general direction and renting raw machines too. The standard distro is Ubuntu 12.04, but CentOS instances are also available. And you can store away your own custom image once you configure it.
Is 5.3 cents per GCEU a good deal? It depends upon what you want to do with your machine. Rackspace prices its machines by the amount of RAM you get. It has stopped selling the anemic 256MB RAM VMs, but rents its 512MB boxes at only 2.2 cents per hour or $16.06 per month. If you want a machine with 4GB from Rackspace, it will cost you 24 cents each hour, about $175 per month.
And one more tidbit that needs emphasizing however this entire article is loaded with the ins and outs of renting servers in the cloud.
Keep in mind that the file system that comes with your cloud computer — be it on Amazon, Rackspace, or Google — is not backed up in any way unless you code some backup routines yourself. You can run MySQL on your cloud box, but the database won’t survive the failure of your machine, so you better find a way to keep a copy somewhere else too.
Very interesting. Here is more about pricing.