Launching Cloud Shell

A Cloud Shell session can be launched in different ways to best fit your use case.

Launching from the Console

The most straightforward way to launch a Cloud Shell session is to use the Activate Cloud Shell button Activate Shell Button in your Cloud Console. This will launch a session in the bottom pane of your Console.

Activate Cloud Shell workflow

If you'd like your users to experiment with your project or code samples without having to worry about downloading the Cloud SDK or installing dependencies, use the Open in Cloud Shell(OiCS) feature. It allows you to construct and publish a URL that automatically performs certain actions upon Cloud Shell launch, such as cloning a Git repository or opening a tutorial. This option has the added advantage of allowing you to customize the launched Cloud Shell experience by supporting the inclusion of URL parameters when crafting an OiCS link.

Launching and connecting locally to Cloud Shell with the gcloud command-line tool

If you'd like to interact with and connect to your Cloud Shell environment using a local command-line, you'll need to install Cloud SDK. Using the gcloud command-line tool, specifically the gcloud alpha cloud-shell command group, you can copy files between your local machine and Cloud Shell environment as well as establish an interactive SSH session with Cloud Shell.