hands-on lab

Scaling an Application Through a Google Cloud Managed Instance Group

Up to 1h
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Thousands of applications nowadays are deployed in the cloud. Both frontend and backend applications require high availability, autoscaling, and fault tolerance. Because of these strategic features, Google Cloud provides you sub-services inside Compute Engine that will allow you to deploy and manage an application through the Compute Engine VMs, that will apply to the previous features. The most important ones are Instance Template and Instance Groups. With the first one, you can create an instance template that represents all the specifics that each VM running your application needs to have (such as the OS, the disk, and network); by using the second one, you can create a group of VMs and, optionally, set up autoscaling. You will create a managed instance group. It means that all the instances inside that group need to run the same instance template.

In this lab, you will create an instance template, an instance group with the autoscaling enabled, and you will then attach an HTTP load balancer to the instance group to load balance the traffic to the VM group. You will also perform a stress test to check that the autoscaling is working properly.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this lab you will be able to:

  • Create an instance template and a managed instance group
  • Attach an HTTP load balancer to an instance group
  • Perform a stress test inside a VM

Intended Audience

This lab is intended for:

  • Google Cloud Professional Cloud Architect (PCA) and Google Cloud Associate Cloud Engineer (ACE) certification candidates
  • Solutions architects who need to deploy and maintain an application architecture that requires high availability and autoscaling
  • Individuals who want to deep learn how to set up an application infrastructure on Compute Engine


Basic knowledge of Compute Engine is preferred but not required. You can follow these two labs related to this topic:


April 16th, 2024 - Resolved check issue

December 5th, 2023 - Addressed user ban issue and promptly added a warning

August 28th, 2023 - Updated instructions and screenshots to reflect latest UI

June 11th, 2023 - Updated instructions and screenshots to reflect latest UI

March 22nd, 2022 - Updated UI and screenshots for accuracy

Environment before

Environment after

About the author

Learning paths

Stefano studies Computer Science and is passionate about technology. He loves working with Cloud services and learning all the best practices for them. Google Cloud Platform and Amazon Web Services are the cloud providers he prefers. He is a Google Cloud Certified Associate Cloud Engineer. Node.js is the programming language he always uses to code. When he's not involved in studying or working, Stefano loves riding his motorbike and exploring new places.

Covered topics

Lab steps

Signing In to the Google Cloud Console
Creating an Instance Template
Deploying a Managed Instance Group
Allowing Traffic to the Compute Engine Instances
Defining an HTTP Load Balancer for the Instance Group
Performing a Stress Test to the Managed Instance Group