Build a Test Drive

What are Test Drives?

Test Drives are a new way of bringing software solution demos to your potential customers. Test Drives allow your users to create their own dedicated, time-limited, testing environments based on a Google Cloud Platform (GCP) infrastructure that you have full control over. As a partner, you also get access to a powerful lead generation tool that allows for automated integration of leads with your CRM and marketing systems.

Test Drive key features

The following table describes some key features of GCP Marketplace Test Drives.

Feature Benefit
Automated deployment of dedicated environments A potential customer is able to create a dedicated solution demo without any interaction from you.
User experience over technical complexity Test Drives are run on your GCP projects. Customers are not required to meet any particular technical requirements to create their dedicated demonstration environment.
Leads generation To run a Test Drive, the customer is required to leave contact data, including their name, company, phone number, and email. Leads created this way can be integrated with your CRM or marketing system.
Cost control You're able to define restrictions on the usage of your Test Drives' resources by setting the maximum number of concurrently running instances, time limit for single Test Drive, and maximum number of relaunches of a Test Drive for a single customer.
Custom user interactions You can customize the messages displayed during the Test Drive launch and sent to the user via email. Custom images, videos, documents, and links can be displayed during the Test Drive.

Build a Test Drive

Building a Test Drive consists of performing a few tasks that are described in detail in the following sections. (Note that you can perform some of these steps concurrently.)

  1. Join the Test Drive program.
  2. Create your Cloud Platform project.
  3. Prepare your Deployment Manager configuration to create the Test Drive environment.
  4. Configure your Test Drive in the Orbitera Framework.
  5. Prepare a step-by-step user guide for your customers to follow.
  6. Configure your GCP Marketplace Test Drive listing with marketing data and other Deployment Manager configurations, as needed.
  7. Test and launch your Test Drive.

The following diagram shows the Test Drive process in more detail.

Join the Test Drive program

The Test Drive program is dedicated to Google Cloud Platform Partners. If you are already a Partner and you are interested in joining the program, please contact your Partner Manager to get more information and support. Partners can join the Test Drive program by creating an account at Orbitera. (If you need help creating your Orbitera account, contact the Orbitera sales team.)

If you are not a Partner yet, but you are interested in creating a Test Drive, please contact the Orbitera sales team via the contact form available at the Orbitera website.

Create your Cloud Platform project

After you've joined the Test Drive program, the first step to create a Test Drive is to configure a GCP project specific to your solution's needs. Most importantly, you'll need to create a dedicated service account with appropriate permissions.

To create the project and set the permissions:

  1. Create a new project in GCP. This project should be dedicated for your Test Drive(s) only.
  2. Enable the Compute Engine API, Cloud Deployment Manager API, and Google Cloud Runtime Configuration API in the project via API Manager
  3. If you have an image ready for the Test Drive, copy it to the newly created Test Drive project. You can do this with the script available at Cloud Storage:
    Otherwise, you can follow the process described at Single VM Test Drive Configuration.
  4. Create a dedicated service account with minimal required permissions under which your project will run in the Google/Orbitera framework (when in doubt, use the Editor role). Save the key file that is generated from this process. You will need the key file to specify which GCP project the Test Drive will run in in the Test Drive framework after development is complete.
  5. (Optional) Create an IAM account for the group with Editor permissions. It might be useful if you need our help with the deployment.

Infrastructure quota and cost

When you know what you want to deploy in your Test Drive, make sure that quotas in your GCP project are set accordingly to allow multiple Test Drives at once.

You can use the Google Cloud Platform Pricing Calculator to calculate the hourly cost of a single Test Drive.

Prepare the Deployment Manager configuration

Deployment Manager is a powerful GCP tool that, when applied to Test Drives, allows you to automate the Test Drive instance environment creation and configuration.

The following pages describe common Test Drive configuration cases:

If you want to learn more about the advanced features of Deployment Manager, refer to the Deployment Manager documentation.

Next step

After you've prepared your Deployment Manager configuration either as a single VM Test Drive configuration or a complex Test Drive environment, you need to configure your Test Drive in the Orbitera Framework. When ready, make your Test Drive visible in the GCP Marketplace.

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