looking for simple cluster configuration
I am using compute engine for embarrassingly parallel scientific calculations. Some of my calculations require a single core and some require 64-cores machines. I am currently using my own scripts: I have a qsub-like command that creates a new instance with the required number of cores, booting it from a custom image with the pre-installed software, connects to a storage bucket via gcsfuse, runs the required command and then kills the instance after it's done. Do I really need to do all of that with my own scripts, or is there any tool that I should use instead? I'd much rather use some ready made tool for all of the management. My usage fluctuates widely (hundreds of cores in parallel for 3 hours, then 2 days with nothing, etc). So I don't want constant sized machines: I like to be billed by the minute for my computations.
You may want to use auto-scaling feature for managed instance group in Google Compute Engine(GCE). This feature adds more instances to your instance group when there is more load (upscaling), and removes instances when there is less load (downscaling). Moreover, you can define autoscaling policy based upon CPU utilization, or Load balancer utilization or request per seconds. Please refer autoscaler decisions document to understand decisions that autoscaler might make when scaling instance groups.