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Those empty clusters that you get for free cost Google money. Perhaps it never should have been free, because that skewed incentives towards models like this.



Unfortunately, even if they switch to dynamically started clusters, the latency of spinning a new cluster is much higher than the latency of adding a bunch of preemptible nodes to existing node pool :/


Google are (were) not the only ones offering this free control plane model, though. My DigitalOcean DOk8s managed tend toward unstable if they are used with too small of node pools. (I don't know why that is, but it seems like a good way to make sure I pay attention to the workloads and also spend at least $20/mo for each cluster I run with them.)

It will be interesting in any case to see if DigitalOcean and Azure are going to follow suit! I'd be very surprised if they do, (but I've also been wrong before, recently too.)


The term is "loss leader." GKE provides the manager node, and cluster management so that we don't have to. And in exchange you sell more compute, storage, network, and app services. This is some ex-Oracle, "what can we do to meet growth objectives," "how can we tax the people who we own" thinking. They're customers, not assets Tim. Your cloud portability play should be the last project to jerk them around on.


Keep in mind that GKE cluster management was paid in the original GKE. GCP only stopped billing for cluster management when EKS released free cluster management.


When did EKS release free cluster management?




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