What is the Difference Between Google App Engine and Google Compute Engine

The main difference between Google App Engine and Google Compute Engine is that Google App Engine is a Platform-as-a-Service which means you deploy your code, and the platform does everything else for you, whereas Google Compute Engine is an Infrastructure-as-a-Service in which you have to create and configure your virtual machine instances.

Google App Engine (GAE)

  1. Platform as a Service (PaaS): GAE provides a fully managed platform for developing, deploying, and scaling web applications and services.
  2. Automatic scaling: GAE automatically scales your application based on incoming traffic and resource requirements without manual intervention.
  3. Limited customization: GAE supports specific runtimes and languages (Python, Java, PHP, Go, and Node.js). You must adhere to the available APIs and services within the GAE ecosystem.
  4. Simplified deployment: GAE abstracts the underlying infrastructure, allowing you to focus on writing code. You don’t need to manage the operating system, networking, or other infrastructure components.
  5. Integrated services: GAE offers easy integration with other GCP services like Datastore, Memcache, and Task Queues.

Google Compute Engine (GCE)

  1. Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS): GCE provides virtual machines (VMs) running on Google’s infrastructure that you can customize and manage.
  2. Manual scaling: GCE allows you to manually configure the number of instances, instance types, and other resources to scale your application.
  3. Full customization: GCE supports any language, runtime, or application stack. You have complete control over the VMs, including the operating system, libraries, and software packages.
  4. Greater control: GCE gives you more control over the underlying infrastructure, including VM configurations, networking, and storage.
  5. Flexible integrations: GCE can be integrated with other GCP services and third-party tools, providing a flexible environment for complex applications.

Google App Engine vs Google Compute Engine: Comparison Table in 2023

Feature Google App Engine Google Compute Engine
Service Type Platform as a Service (PaaS) Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)
Scalability Automatic scaling Manual scaling
Customization Limited (specific runtimes) Full customization (any runtime)
Deployment Simplified deployment Greater control over infrastructure
Integrated Services GAE-specific services Flexible integrations
Infrastructure Management Fully managed infrastructure User-managed infrastructure
Pricing Model Pay-per-use, based on resources Pay-per-use, based on VM instances
Language Support Python, Java, PHP, Go, Node.js Any language or runtime
Use Cases Web applications, APIs, microservices Complex applications, custom stacks


That’s it.

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