App Platform on Digital Ocean

This is new stuff from DO.

App Platform is a hosting product, no surprise there, but it has some features that are Jamstack-inspired in the best possible way, and an additional set of unique and powerful features. Let’s start with some basics:

  • Static sites can be hosted on the free tier
  • Automatic HTTPS
  • Global CDN (Cloudflare is in front, so you’re DDoS safe)
  • Deploy from Git

That’s the stuff that developers like me are loving these days. Take some of the hardest, toil-laden, no-fun aspects of web development and entirely do them for me.

And now the drumroll:

  • This isn’t just for static sites: it’s for PHP, Node, Python, Ruby, Go, Docker Containers, etc.
  • You don’t have to configure and update things, these are boxes ready-to-go for those technologies.
  • You can scale to whatever you need.
  • You don’t pay by the team seat. Unlimited team members. You pay by usage like bandwidth and build time.

Use that link to get $100 in credit over 60 days.

It extremely easy to deploy a static site

You snag it right from GitHub (or GitLab, or Docker Hub), which is great right away, and off you go.

Then we get our first little hint of something compelling right away:

But let’s say we don’t need that immediately, we can go with a free plan and get this out.

The site will build and you can see logs:

And lookie that my static site is LIVE!

Say my site needs to run an actual build process? That, and lots more configuration come in the form of an “App Spec”. This is where I would include those build commands, change Git information, deployment zones, and loads more.

About that database…

Wasn’t that interesting to see the setup steps for this static site suggest adding a database? So many sites need some kind of data store, and it’s often left up to developers to go find some kind of cloud-accessible data storage that will work well with their app. With Digital Ocean App Platform, it can live right alongside your static app.

It’s called a component.

As you can see, it can be, but doesn’t have to be a Database. It could be another type of server! Here I could pop a PostgreSQL DB on there for just $7/month.

If what you need to add is an internal or external service, it will let you add that via another Git repo that you hook up. Oh my what a modern system you now have. A front end and a back end each individually deployable directly via Git itself.

This is for server-side apps as well.

This feels big to me! I get that same kinda easy DX feeling I get with static sites, but with, say, a Python or Ruby on Rails app. Free deployment! Server boxes I don’t have to configure and manage myself!

Seems like a pretty happy-path hosting environment for lots of stuff.

Use that link to get $100 in credit over 60 days.