Costs of running WordPress using Google Cloud

Self-hosting a WordPress blog gives you the ultimate control over your website and database. However, you may want to utilize cloud IaaS or PaaS offerings to provide the lower-level infrastructure (machines, network, or even the webserver). Google provides resources for running WordPress on Google Cloud Platform, but there is very little upfront information about the costs of the different options. GCP’s complex pricing (with Always Free quota and sustained-use discounts), along with some hidden costs in some configurations, made it difficult to predict the final monthly cost.

Knowing the price of hosting a WordPress blog on Google Cloud Platform is important, because small-time bloggers are going to be comparing these options against options that cost less than $5 a month or even nothing (e.g. the WordPress.com personal and free plans, or even jumping blogging platform completely to Medium or similar).

I’ve recently been through the exercise of measuring the costs of running WordPress on GCP with this blog. The summary of the dominant costs is:

Configuration Breakdown Minimum Cost (USD) per month
App Engine + Cloud SQL
(asia-east2)
f1-micro App Engine instance ($0) +
db-f1-micro MySQL Cloud SQL instance ($11.50) +
10GB-months low-cost storage ($1.35)
$12.35
App Engine + GCE + VPC
(asia-east2)
f1-micro App Engine instance ($0) +
f1-micro GCE instance ($5.42) +
2x f1-micro VPC Connector ($10.84) + PD ($1.45)
$17.71
App Engine + exposed GCE
(asia-east2)
1 f1-micro App Engine instance ($0) +
f1-micro GCE instance ($5.42) +
PD ($1.45)
$6.87
Just GCE
(asia-east2)
f1-micro GCE instance ($5.42) + PD ($1.45) $6.87
free App Engine + free GCE
(us-central1)
f1-micro App Engine instance ($0) +
f1-micro Always Free GCE instance ($0)
almost $0

Caveats:

  • $0 prices assume you’re not already consuming your GCP “Always Free” quota.
  • There are some additional costs not included in the table (storage and network), but they were < $0.10/month for me.
  • I’m not counting Google’s $300 “free trial”, which only lasts 12 months.

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Ergodox EZ Review

I started using an Ergodox EZ with QMK firmware 6 weeks ago. I’m now proficient with this keyboard and will continue to use it every day, and I’m impressed with the build quality. However, the Ergodox has some drawbacks, some of which are by design.

I’m coming from using both the built-in keyboards on MacBooks, and the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000. In both cases, I perform software-remapping of the keyboard layouts in macOS, the Linux console and X:

  • US/QWERTY physical layouts are remapped to Dvorak
  • the physical caps lock key is remapped to control

Although I was happy with these keyboards and the Dvorak layout, I wanted to experience what all the fuss was about with mechanical keyboards. I like the Microsoft ergonomic keyboards, so I was looking for something similar with a split and tented/sculpted shape. I liked the idea of a columnar layout, too. And ideally I wanted a full-size keyboard.

Unfortunately no keyboards seem to fit these criteria simultaneously, so I gave up on finding a full-size keyboard. I liked the open source nature of Ergodox, but didn’t want to solder my own, so I got an Ergodox EZ with Cherry MX Blue switches and sculpted blank (Signature Plastics DCS, with O-rings) keycaps.

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macOS Help menu keyboard shortcut

macOS has a handy Search field in the Help menu, which lets you search the help content and also other menu actions. This is great when you want to navigate the menus quickly with a keyboard.

macOS Help menu Search

So how do you focus that search box with the keyboard? Well, there’s a default keyboard shortcut for the help menu bound to โ‡งโŒ˜/ (Shift + Command + /):

default macOS keyboard shortcut for the help menu

However, most people will find this doesn’t open the help menu / action search; instead it opens the application’s documentation. That’s because apps already bind โŒ˜? to the documentation, and ? is equivalent to Shift + / on most keyboards.

So the fix is to bind another key combination from System Preferences > Keyboard > Shortcuts > App Shortcuts > All Applications. I use ^F12 (Ctrl + F12).