In Under 5 Minutes: Running Microsoft SQL Server 2016 on Google Cloud Platform (From @fblissjr)

The following post is a blog written by Fred Bliss, CTO and Co-Founder of Aptitive.  He is also a SQL and cloud enthusiast:

…what a strange, strange world we live in.

Google announced a few new changes to its cloud platform today, most notably ramping up the features and capabilities of Microsoft SQL Server 2016. Typical enterprise requirements — such as AlwaysOn / High Availability and disk snapshots — are now supported (Brent Ozar wrote a good article on this today).

In fact, SQL Server Enterprise can now be launched and deployed with a few button clicks, and within minutes, it’s all up and running. Just to show how quick and easy it is to spend $1000 /month, I’ll demonstrate it again:

Installing SQL Server in Under 5 Minutes

Navigate to the Public Images page in the Google Cloud console (

Here you’ll find all the pre-configured image. Let’s go with SQL Server 2016 Enterprise, because why not?

Once selecting, we’ll click to create the instance and get moved to a fairly painless configuration page.

SQL Server licensing is per core — same as buying it directly

We’ll create a 4 core machine with 26gb of RAM. We would likely need more in a real production environment, but just in case I forget to shut this VM down, I’d prefer to get charged $1400 instead of $2000. (side note: you actually pay less the longer your instance runs under Google — interesting pricing model)

Frugality may actually now encourage you to not shut it down

I click ‘Create’, and literally within 5 seconds, it’s up and running. It’s pretty amazing, actually, to be able to create a VM quicker than you can even react to it.


Let’s RDP in to see our results:

Looks right…
…and there’s my SQL Server services

Now I can fidget with the network firewall, run SSIS on Google Cloud, and load data from my Google SQL Server to my Azure SQL Server PaaS instance. And maybe from there into AWS just for fun.

The openness we’re witnessing from Google and Microsoft is impressive. Vendor lock-in is becoming less of an issue from an IaaS standpoint (PaaS is a different story altogether). But just being able to do this puts a smile on my face.

Want to talk more about cool cloud stuff? Ping me directly and let’s get a discussion going!