Certified Cloud Computing Professional Google Apps and app engine

Google Apps and app engine

App Engine

Google App Engine (often referred to as GAE or simply App Engine, and also used by the acronym GAE/J) is a platform as a service (PaaS) cloud computing platform for developing and hosting web applications in Google-managed data centers. Applications are sandboxed and run across multiple servers. App Engine offers automatic scaling for web applications—as the number of requests increases for an application, App Engine automatically allocates more resources for the web application to handle the additional demand.

Google App Engine is free up to a certain level of consumed resources. Fees are charged for additional storage, bandwidth, or instance hours required by the application. It was first released as a preview version in April 2008, and came out of preview in September 2011.

Currently, the supported programming languages are Python, Java (and, by extension, other JVM languages such as Groovy, JRuby, Scala, Clojure, Jython and PHP via a special version of Quercus), and Go. Google has said that it plans to support more languages in the future, and that the Google App Engine has been written to be language independent.

Python web frameworks that run on Google App Engine include GAE framework, Django, CherryPy, Pyramid, Flask, web2py and webapp2, as well as a custom Google-written webapp framework and several others designed specifically for the platform that emerged since the release. Any Python framework that supports the WSGI using the CGI adapter can be used to create an application; the framework can be uploaded with the developed application. Third-party libraries written in pure Python may also be uploaded.

Google App Engine supports many Java standards and frameworks. Core to this is the servlet 2.5 technology using the open-source Jetty Web Server, along with accompanying technologies such as JSP. JavaServer Faces operates with some workarounds. Though the datastore used may be unfamiliar to programmers, it is easily accessed and supported with JPA. JDO and other methods of reading and writing data are also provided. The Spring Framework works with GAE, however the Spring Security module (if used) requires workarounds. Apache Struts 1 is supported, and Struts 2 runs with workarounds.

The Django web framework and applications running on it can be used on App Engine with modification. Django-nonrel aims to allow Django to work with non-relational databases and the project includes support for App Engine.

Applications developed for the Grails web application framework may be modified and deployed to Google App Engine with very little effort using the App Engine Plugin.

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Google Apps

Google Apps is a service from Google providing independently customizable versions of several Google products under a custom domain name. It features several Web applications with similar functionality to traditional office suites, including Gmail, Google Groups, Google Calendar, Talk, Docs and Sites.

Google Apps for business is free for 30 days, $5 USD per user account and month thereafter or $50 per year. Google Apps for Education is free and offers the same amount of storage as free Gmail accounts. Google Apps for Education combines features from the Standard and Premier editions.

In addition to shared apps (calendar, docs, etc.), there is Google Apps Marketplace, an App "store" for Google Apps users. It contains various apps, both free and for a fee, which can be installed to customize the Google Apps experience for the user.

Google Apps is available in a number of distinct editions. Each edition has a limit on the number of users that may be active at any given time. Google Apps launched with a default user allotment of 200 users, which was shortly changed to 100 users. In addition, users could request to have their user limit increased through a manual process taking (at least) 1–2 weeks for approval. In January 2009, the cap was changed so that all new accounts would receive only 50 users as opposed to 100, and could not request more without payment. This was confirmed as relating to the launch of the Google Apps commercial reseller program. Existing Standard Edition users before January 2009 kept their old allocation, in addition to the ability their "request" more users, though these limit requests are now commonly answered with suggestions to "upgrade your subscription". In 2011, the limit on the free Google Apps product was further reduced to 10 users, effective for new users.

The subscription level of a Google Apps edition is billed based on the total number of available users in the Apps account, and the edition features apply to all users accounts in that subscription. It is not possible to purchase upgrades for a subset of users: to increase the user limit, subscriptions must be purchased for all accounts. For example, an upgrade from a "Standard" limit of 50 users to allow up to 60 users would involve paying for 60 users, whether they are used or not.

Google Apps (formerly Google Apps Standard Edition)

  • Free
  • Brandable name and logos in the control panel, i.e. @yourdomain.com
  • Same storage space as regular gmail.com accounts (over 10,300 MB as of October 15th, 2012)
  • Text ads standard (can be turned off in each account)
  • Limited to 10 users within same domain.
  • Email attachments cannot be larger than 25 megabytes.
  • Limited to sending email to 500 external recipients per day per email account.

Google Apps Partner Edition / Google Apps for ISPs
Same as standard edition with the following exceptions:

  • No limit on number of mailboxes
  • Google API is available to use to manage and provision accounts
  • Paid service with tech support available with pricing starting at $0.35 per mailbox per resellers such as https://www.ikano.com.

Google Apps for Business (formerly Google Apps Premier Edition)

  • US$50 per account per year, or US$5 per account monthly
  • Text ads optional
  • Integrated Postini policy-based messaging security
  • Conference room/resource scheduling
  • 99.9% e-mail uptime guarantee
  • APIs available for Single Sign On
  • 24/7 phone support
  • Google Video, a service similar to YouTube with private groups (discontinued)
  • Limited to sending email to 2000 external recipients per day per email account.
  • Storage space 25 GB in each account, allocated for use across all products including e-mail.

Google Apps for Education (formerly Google Apps Education Edition)
Same as Google Apps for Business except for the following:

  • Free for K-12 schools, colleges, and universities with up to 30,000 users
  • No ads for faculty, staff, or students
  • Google may serve ads to accounts not associated with enrolled students, staff or volunteers
  • Storage space 25 GB as of June 24, 2011

Google Apps for Non-profits (formerly Google Apps Education Edition)
Same as Google Apps for Business except for the following:

  • Free for accredited 501(c)(3) non-profit entities with less than 3,000 users
  • Large non-profits eligible for 40% discount on Google Apps for Business
  • No ads for faculty, staff, or students
  • Google may serve ads to accounts not associated with staff or volunteers
  • Storage space 25 GB as of June 24, 2011

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