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N2D VMs with latest AMD EPYC CPUs enable on average over 30% better price-performance

Last year, we announced the general-purpose N2D Compute Engine machine type based on the 2nd Generation AMD EPYC™ processor. Today, we are excited to announce that the N2D family now supports the latest 3rd Generation AMD EPYC processor.

N2D VMs powered by 3rd Generation AMD EPYC processors deliver, on average, over 30% price-performance improvement across a variety of workloads as compared to prior 2nd Generation AMD EPYC processors. If you already use N2D machines, you can use the new hardware simply by selecting “AMD Milan or later” as the CPU platform for your N2D VMs. Further, if you’re using our first-generation N1 VM family, you’ll see a substantial price-performance1 improvement with the new N2D family.

N2D VMs based on 3rd Generation AMD EPYC processors offer a broad set of features and options. N2D supports VMs with up to 224 vCPUs and up to 896 GB of memory, for workloads that require a higher number of threads. Google Cloud offers the highest number of vCPUs per VM across all general-purpose machine types available from a public cloud provider. N2D also includes a wide array of VM shapes (spanning standard, high-CPU and high-memory options) and Custom Machine Types, allowing you to pick custom sizes based on your workload needs. 

N2D VMs also support our recently introduced 100 Gbps high-bandwidth network to meet the demands of high-throughput workloads. In addition, N2D also supports high storage performance with persistent disk and up to 9 TB of local SSD. Combining high-throughput VMs with high-performance Local SSD is beneficial for I/O-intensive workloads. N2D is also available as a sole tenant node for workloads that require isolation to meet regulatory requirements or dedicated hardware for licensing requirements.

New innovation

Customers using N2D VMs powered by 3rd generation AMD EPYC processors get access to the latest features in the AMD EPYC processor family including up to 256 MB of L3 cache and ‘Zen 3’ cores, which provide higher instructions per clock (IPC) compared to ‘Zen 2’. These processors include the same features offered in 2nd generation AMD EPYC processors including PCIe 4 support, high levels of memory bandwidth and access to AMD Infinity Guard for advanced security features. All of this means customers using the latest version of N2D with 3rd generation AMD EPYC can take advantage of its high performance for a variety of general-purpose workloads. 

“With exceptional performance and features, our AMD EPYC processors will provide future and existing Google Cloud N2D customers high performance capabilities for a variety of workloads,” said Lynn Comp, corporate vice president, Cloud Business Group, AMD. “This is another exciting extension of our relationship with Google, adding to the existing 2nd Gen EPYC based N2D VMs and the new T2D VMs, and our team is proud to continue to work together with Google Cloud on this.”

What customers are saying

Fullstory, a digital experience intelligence platform provider, was an early user of the new N2D VM family. 

“At FullStory, we are constantly looking for ways to improve database performance and reduce query latencies, especially as data sizes are always increasing,” said Jaime Yap, Director of Engineering at FullStory. “In our testing with Google Cloud’s latest N2D instances based on the AMD Milan CPU, we were pleased to see some query workloads achieve ~29% performance gains on average when compared to previous generation N2D VMs. We expect this to translate to dramatically improved utilization and better experiences for our customers.”

Vimeo, the world’s leading all-in-one video software solution, tested the new N2D VMs. 

“At Vimeo, we have always believed in providing a best in class video quality experience to our users,” said Joe Peled, Director, hosting and delivery operations at Vimeo. “The bulk of our video content is CPU-processed running encoding workloads such as x264 (H.264), x265 (HEVC), and rav1e (AV1) to achieve optimal video fidelity with minimum artifacts. Google Cloud’s new AMD Milan based N2D VMs unlock a major improvement to our users by significantly reducing time spent in our transcoding pipelines on the order of 20%, and allow us to reduce costs by a similar factor.”

Google Kubernetes Engine support

Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE) is the leading platform for organizations looking for advanced container orchestration, delivering the highest levels of reliability, security, and scalability. GKE supports N2D nodes based on 3rd Generation AMD EPYC Processors, helping you get the most out of your containerized workloads. You can add nodes based on N2D 3rd Gen EPYC VMs to your GKE clusters by choosing the N2D machine type in your GKE node pools and specifying the minimum CPU platform “AMD Milan”.

100 Gbps Networking

We’ve optimized Google Cloud’s unique Andromeda network to support hardware offloads such as zero-copy, TSO, and encryption and are able to offer N2D VMs with 100 Gbps networking out-of-the-box.

N2D VMs will be able to take full advantage of Google Cloud’s high-performance network infrastructure with bandwidth configurations that enable 100 or 50 Gbps speeds for VM shapes with 48 or more vCPUs. 

These networking configurations are offered as an add-on feature for N2D VMs and impose no additional inventory constraints on N2D deployments—you’ll be able to upgrade your N2D VMs’ network bandwidth in any zone with N2D availability. 

Confidential Computing (coming soon)

Confidential Computing is an industry-wide effort to protect data in-use including encryption of data in-memory—while it’s being processed. With Confidential Computing, you can run your most sensitive applications and services on N2D VMs.

We’re committed to delivering a portfolio of Confidential Computing VM instances and services such as GKE and Dataproc using the Secure Encrypted Virtualization (SEV) extension. You’ll be pleased to know that we’ll support SEV using this latest generation of AMD EPYC™ processors in the near-term and more advanced capabilities in the future.

Target workloads 

N2D VMs are suitable for a wide variety of general-purpose workloads such as web serving, app serving, databases, and enterprise applications. With machine types that include up to 224 vCPUs, N2D machines are ideal for high-throughput workloads that can benefit from having a large number of threads. N2D machines are also ideal for workloads that may benefit from confidential computing features. N2D machines based on 3rd Generation AMD EPYC processors provide significant performance gains over current generation N2D VMs for various benchmarks and general purpose workloads as shown in the graph below.


N2D VMs with 3rd Generation AMD EPYC processors are offered at the same price as the previous generation N2D VMs. 


N2D VMs with 3rd Generation AMD EPYC processors are currently in preview in several Google Cloud regions: us-central (Iowa), us-east1 (S. Carolina), europe-west4 (Netherlands), and asia-southeast1 (Singapore) and will be available in other Google Cloud regions globally in the coming months. Please sign-up here and contact your Google Cloud sales representative if you are interested in the Preview. 

1. Based on price-performance improvements measured on the new N2D Milan VMs vs. N1 VMs for the following: VP9 Transcode (51%), Nginx (72%), Server side Java throughput under SLA (72%), AES-256 Encryption (273%).

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