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Google Cloud SQL Goes GA, Offers 500GB Databases

By - Source: Toms IT Pro

Google's cloud-based SQL database service has made it out of preview mode and reached generally available status. The announcement stated that the MySQL compatible cloud database service is covered by a 99.5% up-time service level agreement (SLA), encryption, and support for databases up to 500GB in size.

In addition to support for the open source MySQL relational database, Cloud SQL is fully managed by Google. Replication, patch management, and database management are included in the service and allow the developer to work on the application and the database, rather than maintenance. 

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User MySQL databases can be hosted in the cloud and databases can be imported and exported using mysqldump. Google Cloud SQL is available for Google App Engine applications written in Java, Python, PHP, and Go. The service also provides support for the standard connection protocol, MySQL Wire. This allows customers to use MySQL compatible tools such as MySQL Workbench, MySQL command-line tool, and Toad.

Data protection for disaster recovery and business continuity is provided through data replication to multiple geographic locations. To protect against service interruptions, failover is managed automatically and databases are scheduled for backup. Note, however, that backups are currently not encrypted.

Data security has been enhanced through automatic encryption of data when stored. That includes database tables, temporary files, and also data traffic that occurs on Google's internal network. Additionally, Google Cloud SQL supports external connections to an instance using the encrypted Secure Socket Layer (SSL) protocol.

Access to data by all hosts and Google's App Engine applications that connect to the database must be explicitly authorized. MySQL also provides controlled access to data at the column, table, and database levels.

Instances are scalable from a D0 (smallest) instance (500MB storage, 128MB RAM) to a D32 (largest) instance (10GB storage, 16GB RAM). Additional storage of up to 500GB per instance is available while only charging the customer for storage they actually use. Advance reservation of storage space for the database is not required. According to Google, changing from one tier to another only requires a few seconds of downtime.

Google's Cloud SQL SLA, like most service SLAs, exists to show customers expected minimum performance standards. However, except to show a benchmark, SLAs tend to be pointless and provide little or no real customer protections. Google's SLA follows that trend and should not be a factor when selecting their service. The SLA has various limitations that includes a maximum credit to the customer of 50% of a customer's monthly billing. That amount could be trivial compared to the loss of revenue for some businesses that rely on consistent availability to produce revenue.

Pricing for Googles Cloud SQL is tiered and based on a variety of factors including storage use, instance tier package selected, Input/Output usage, and other factors.  For additional information regarding the Google Cloud SQL features and pricing visit cloud.google.com.

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