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Have You TrieId Northflank? Microservices Platform with a Free Tier!

Northflank LogoI have not, but maybe you have.  If so, please comment and let us know what you think.  I just stumbled across them while browsing tonight and when I saw free tier I knew I had to write it up for the community.

Northflank (based in London, England) describes themselves as:

The comprehensive developer platform to build and scale microservices, jobs and managed databases with a powerful UI, API & CLI.

Of course, we could say the same about AWS, Azure, Google Cloud, etc.  So what is different about Northflank?

They also say

Northflank is a sandbox of developer tools designed for you to pick and mix the features needed to maximise productivity within your high-performance development teams.

So it’s a cloud service, but they’re trying to build a little bit higher scaffold for you to start from.  Under the hood, it’s Docker and various hosted services.  The best way to understand it is to look at some examples of using their service in the real world:

There are many more examples on their guides page.

Now let’s talk Free Tier.

What you came for: free tier (Developer).  This entitles you to:

  • 2 services (think Docker), 2 cron jobs, 1 add-on like a DB
  • Github/GitLab/Bitbucket-based workflow
  • Buildspacks, customer Dockerfiles
  • Free SSL and custom domains
  • API/CLI access

Naturally, there are limits.  Not exhaustive:

  • 1m HTTP reqs a month
  • 10GB of free logs and 10GB of metrics
  • .15 cents/GB for bandwidth
  • DB is .30 cents/GB

The bandwidth is AWS nosebleed pricey but not surprising they’re metering it.  Still, you’re not going to use this service for hosting 4K videos but rather micro services.

Now, you might be expecting that once you get above free tier, it’s on the crack cocaine model: the first hit is free but if you want to do anything, you have to sell a kidney in China to pay for it.  Not so!  They actually have LowEnd pricing.  You can start as low as $2.71 a month.

Keep in mind they’re not selling you a KVM VPS that you go in and install Debian on or something like that.  It’s a micro service platform.

Obviously their market is pro IT but I could see hobbyists using this service as well.  Of course, you could write the next WHMCS replacement and deploy it there if you wanted to.

 

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