After many years of the release in alpha state, Google has announced the general availability of suspending and resuming features for VMs in its Cloud services. From now on, all Google Cloud customers can suspend and resume their systems by utilizing the ACPI S3 signal.
Quite similar to laptops’ sleep feature
The working principle of suspending feature for Google Cloud virtual machines is very similar to current laptops’ sleep function when you lid their screens. As soon as you suspend the VM, the whole instance is saved to storage until you decide to resume it again. When you resume, the data is read from the disk to rebuild the latest state of the virtual machine.
The suspending and resuming features for VMs might help cut costs for companies
Google Cloud is making use of ACPI S3 signal to enable suspending and resuming features for broad compatibility across operating systems; so customers won’t need to use specific operating system versions or install additional tools to their systems.
Suspending Google Cloud virtual machines cuts the costs of paid cores and RAM, but it does not cut the storage, licensing, and VM operation costs. Google points out this feature can be useful for companies that face demand spikes in their VM instances; configuring additional VMs in suspend mode later to activate in spike periods seems pretty reasonable. The cost savings of this feature is a nice addition as well.