Google Hosting – How to Install WordPress on Google App Engine
A few weeks back, we had the pleasure of speaking with Matt Cutts, the head of web spam for Google. Matt is probably best known for his work on search engine optimization and web spam, but he now also does a lot of work with app engine and other platforms built on top of Google’s open source technologies. Below we’ve compiled a Q&A session about Google Hosting, what it is, and how to get started.
What is Google hosting?
If you’ve spent any time at all on the web in the last few years, you’ll know that there are essentially three ways to host a website:
- Self-hosted: This means you’re maintaining and operating the server yourself
- Cloud-based: This means you’re renting server space from a company (such as Amazon, Microsoft, or Google) and everything is handled for you
- Free: This means you can host your website with limited tools from either Google or a third-party
Google now offers a free web host for Blogger users. What this means is that if you’ve been using Blogger to host your website, you can now use their toolset to further develop it. You no longer have to settle for whatever blogging platform they provide or choose from a small selection of pre-made themes. Now, you can fully customize your site with the tools you’re already using to manage your social media.
Why should you use Google Hosting?
There are a variety of reasons why you might want to use Google Hosting for your blog or website, but here are the big two:
- Scalability: If you’ve ever tried to run a business or website and needed to expand to a larger space, you’ll know that it’s not easy to find a spot for extra offices or to rent a conference room. With the increasing number of devices that people use to access the internet, having a mobile-friendly website is essential. What this means is that if you’re designing a site that’s meant to be accessed from a smartphone or tablet, you need to make sure that it functions properly across all devices. This way, you can be certain that no matter what device your visitors are using, they’ll be able to easily browse your content.
- Freedom: When you log into Google Hosting, you will see a dashboard that looks a lot like the one below. This represents the freedom that Google gives you as a hosting customer. You’re not locked into any specific software or plan and you can install any plugins or programs that you’d like to use to further enhance your site.
How is Google Hosting different from the other two types of web hosting discussed above?
There are a few distinct differences between Google Hosting and the other types of web hosting mentioned above, but here are the biggest ones:
- API access: With Google Hosting, you have API access to everything that the service provides. So, while you don’t have full control over the website’s appearance, you can access and utilize their tools to your advantage.
- Scalability: Though Google Hosting is best known for its scalable infrastructure, you aren’t locked into using it. This means that you can install any software or platform that you’d like and take advantage of their resources as needed. Plus, if you do ever decide to move to another provider, you can simply uninstall the software you’ve previously installed and start over.
- Security: Another big difference between Google Hosting and the other two types of hosting discussed above is that Google provides multiple layers of security, including malware protection, real-time protection, and a firewall. While these elements might not seem necessary when you’re simply keeping a personal blog, they’re essential if you’re an administrator of a company website. The more security layers a service uses, the more effective it is at keeping intruders out. This makes websites hosted on Google more difficult to hack.
- Backup: Last but not least, let’s not forget about the importance of backups! It’s good practice to create regular backups of your website’s important files in case something happens to them. Luckily, Google Hosting offers this feature, so you don’t have to worry about losing any vital data due to errors or accidents.
So, there you have it. According to Matt Cutts, head of web spam for Google, it’s best to use one of their free services to host your website. If you’ve been thinking about upgrading your existing Blogger blog or starting a new blog, this might be the perfect opportunity for you.