CockroachDB Serverless: Build What You Dream, Never Worry About Your Database Again

CockroachDB Serverless: Build What You Dream, Never Worry About Your Database Again

We built CockroachDB so that every developer could have a resilient relational database that can easily scale to meet the requirements of even the most demanding applications. Whether you are building a breakthrough, world-changing app or working on a small project with friends, you should never be held back by the operational burden required to make it work.

While hundreds of organizations have already adopted CockroachDB, we wanted to take another leap in accessibility. We wanted to remove all barriers between developers and the promise of a massively scalable, familiar SQL database that can power applications of any size. To do that, we had to revisit some of our earliest assumptions. Then we had to question everything.

  • What if we could make distributed databases simple to operate?

    By definition, distributed systems involve thinking about more than one machine. This leads to time-consuming configuration choices that are hard to get right without specialized expertise. You shouldn’t have to spend time weighing tradeoffs between picking a small number of large machines or a large number of small machines. Everything should just work. 

  • What if we could make resilience a commodity?

    Distributed systems are resilient because they don’t have single points of failure. This means replicating data and spreading it around, but it also means more hardware and higher costs. Not everyone is OK tripling their costs for an extra “9.” We want always-on apps to be a commodity, not a luxury that only the largest and most technical organizations can afford. 

  • What if we could make everything available instantly and on-demand?

    Spinning up the resources to power distributed cloud databases takes time, and that’s time that could be spent building. Every moment waiting is a missed opportunity. 

  • What if we could make open source “free” again?

    Open source lets you “stand on the shoulders of giants”, building exciting new services on top of free technology that has been created and refined collaboratively. Unfortunately, in recent years this benefit has shrunk as developers increasingly rely on paid, managed services. Both the database and the resources that power it should be perpetually free for small workloads. 

We wanted to tackle these challenges while keeping developer productivity gains that people get from CockroachDB through familiar SQL, which keeps data management complexity in the database and out of application tiers. We couldn’t do this by just adding features to CockroachDB. We needed to take a step back and rethink our approach to the database at a fundamental level.

Introducing CockroachDB Serverless

CockroachDB Serverless get started demo

CockroachDB Serverless gives you instant access to a horizontally scalable relational database that you can spin up in seconds without having to worry about hardware details or capacity planning. And, most importantly, you pay for what you use and pay nothing for small apps. 

A CockroachDB Serverless database in many ways looks like a single Postgres instance, but it is really a resilient, multi-tenant distributed system built from the ground up to take full advantage of the resources available in the cloud.

  • Start instantly

    You can sign up with your GitHub account and provision your database in seconds. No credit card required.

  • Automatically scale with your workload

    CockroachDB Serverless scales with your user demand. No more taking minutes of downtime to “scale up” a primary machine to try to get ahead of traffic growth. This scale works in both directions: if you aren’t sending traffic, the database – and your query costs – scales down to zero. It takes only a fraction of a second to serve your first query after an idle period. 

  • Avoid planned and unplanned downtime

    CockroachDB Serverless is resilient, and behind the scenes your data is replicated at least three times. This means that, even in the free tier, you won’t have downtime for things like availability zone outages, database upgrades, and security patches. Even schema changes are online, so you can avoid those pesky maintenance windows.

  • Pay for what you use and never overspend

    CockroachDB Serverless Beta pricing is straightforward; you pay based on how much you store and the work your queries do. We wanted to make pricing fair, but also avoid the sticker shock that can come with usage-based pricing. You can set monthly spend limits to ensure you always stay within your budget. There is one exception to our pay for what you use philosophy: while your application’s resource usage is small and your data size is less than 5 GB, you don’t pay anything at all. Ever. 

  • Use Postgres-compatible SQL

    CockroachDB Serverless maintains compatibility with PostgreSQL, so you can use many of the familiar tools from the PostgreSQL ecosystem. It doesn’t require you to sacrifice things like the transactions, foreign keys, and secondary indexes that simplify your app logic. This is a scalable relational database with full SQL support to make sure you are productive from day one and well beyond it. 

How to get started with CockroachDB Serverless

You can start building your next app or service for free on CockroachDB Serverless and never fear that success will break your database. We are already seeing exciting examples of what developers are doing with early access to free, resilient CockroachDB Serverless databases; the team at TreesPlease Games is building on CockroachDB Serverless so that they can easily prototype new systems, keep costs low, and not worry about how they might scale.

CockroachDB Serverless Beta is a leap forward in making the power of CockroachDB available to every developer. From here we are going to iterate on community feedback and add things like an API, support for REST queries, more regions, and capacity to power increasingly demanding applications as we move towards a GA release.

As we share this beta with the world, we want to extend a very special thank you to the early adopters from our community that have created thousands of cloud databases and given us feedback. Every issue you filed, every slack message you sent, makes a difference and helps us make CockroachDB better. We hope you see we’ve been listening. 

To get started, simply sign up here to create your first cluster; no credit card required.

Additional Resources

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