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I am getting started in web application development and am considering using Google App Engine. It's great that I can deploy the web app to the Google servers, but is that my only option? Can I use an authentication system different than the Google services?

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2 Answers 2

Google provides an SDK for running locally. It's a little slow and chunky, but works fine for development. As far as authentication, you can do whatever. The default Python framework include Google authentication for free, but you can always roll your own or use the auth modules for a framework like Django or Spring Security if you are using Java.

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  1. AppScale is great for running on your own server :

AppScale is an open-source hybrid cloud platform. AppScale implements a number of popular APIs including those of Google App Engine, MapReduce (via Hadoop), MPI and others. AppScale executes as a guest virtual machine (guestVM) over any virtualization layer that can host an Ubuntu Lucid image. We currently test and support the Xen hypervisor and the Kernel Virtual Machine (KVM). AppScale also automatically deploys over the Amazon EC2 public cloud and Eucalyptus private clouds.

  1. Yes, you can use your own non-Google user/authentication service. One non-Google open-source option is called 'AdrianRemembersMe-Django' :

Member login & remember me functionality with basic security & usability best practices, for google app engine with django.

It is available as a starting content in creating applications on CoderBuddy (for the most up to date version).

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You should state your affiliation with CoderBuddy, to make this post look less spammish. –  Matthieu Dec 9 '11 at 3:44

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