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First Impressions of the Google Cloud Platform App

Google Cloud Platform App | CloudbakersA few weeks ago, Google announced that they released an iOS version of the Google Cloud Platform monitoring app. As a development shop that heavily uses the Google Cloud Platform, we downloaded it immediately. 

Previously, developers and system administrators were practically unable to look at their developer console on their mobile phone. It wasn’t responsive and it was tough to navigate. The Google Cloud Platform application greatly simplifies the experience on your mobile, giving developers much more freedom.

Initial Usage

To begin, sign in was an easy step since I was already signed into other Google Apps on my phone. Once signed in, I could see my most recent projects on the left hand navigation bar.

Recent Projects in Google Cloud Platform App | Cloudbakers

Clicking into a project, you can see various types of cards containing different types of metrics. When I selected Internal Application, Cloud Platform Status, Billing, and Number of Instances were displayed by default.

Internal Application Metrics in Google Cloud Platform | Cloudbakers

You can also add more cards with different metrics that I assume changes depending on what Google Cloud Platform services you utilize.

Selecting Additional Metrics in Google Cloud Platform | Cloudbakers

Diving Deeper

Clicking the Hamburger menu on the top right let’s you switch projects or look into the Resources that you are using. From there, you can look look at high level metrics about your CloudSQL instances or your App Engine project. The app even lets you choose different App Engine versions to look at if you’re doing Beta or A/B testing. Taking a deeper dive into the App Engine metrics, you can see total number of requests, current load, and server errors.

Deeper Metrics in Google Cloud Platform | Cloudbakers

Additionally, if you really want to see a chart on your home screen, you can add it. For a team that manages lots of projects, this could be extremely helpful. You can click into the app and at a glance, see the latency on all of your current applications. It’s a dashboarding tool out of the box!

Metric Display Options in Google Cloud Platform | Cloudbakers

Also featured in the menu is the ability to share one of the graphs via email or any other standard iOS app. Let’s say I wanted to send my coworkers a picture of the number of instances that are spun up throughout the day. It’d be as easy as a click of a button and send it away!

Sharing Metrics in Google Cloud Platform | Cloudbakers

Finally, if you have any policies set up through Cloud Monitoring, you can also access them just like any other card in the app.

In Conclusion

Overall, the Cloud Platform App is a great start for Google. It gives developers access to metrics on their phone and allows for easy sharing and monitoring. I would like to see native iOS push alerts (even if you have PagerDuty or SMS alerts enabled). It’d be nice to know when my app was approaching my daily pricing limits via a push notification.

Here's a quick overview:

Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • Intuitive and consistent UI
  • Customizable
  • Built-in sharing

Cons:

  • No native alerts
  • Can't query/view logs
  • Memcache stats were not available to view

If you are interested in how Cloudbakers puts the Google Cloud Platform App to work, be sure to click learn more below.

Build your own custom application with the help of Cloudbakers!

Originally published on November 04, 2015

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