Google Cloud: Partner Interconnect

Google’s private interconnection service is called Google Cloud’s Partner Interconnect (GCI Partner). GCI Partner enables customers to create private connections between their remote network environments and their Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) deployments.

See how to setup and configure here.

When connecting to Google Cloud Platform (GCP) via GCI Partner with Megaport, the Virtual Cross Connect (VXC) forms the Layer 2 component of the connection and Layer 3 BGP is established directly between the customer and GCP.  

Benefits of Creating GCI Partner Connections with Megaport

  • Enhanced security and higher network performance
  • Connectivity reach beyond Google’s existing network locations
  • Scalable connectivity for those who do not require the full bandwidth of Google’s Dedicated Interconnect
  • Savings on egress traffic costs from the customer’s VPC network to their on-premises network
  • API integration between Megaport and Google Cloud which simplifies the provisioning of connections for a fast and seamless experience

Key Google Cloud terms to understand:

Virtual Private Cloud (VPC)

A group of cloud resources within GCP. VPC provides a comprehensive set of Google-managed networking capabilities including granular IP address range selection route, firewalls, Virtual Private Network (VPN), and Google Cloud Router.

Partner Interconnect Attachment (VLAN-Attachment)

A virtual point-to-point tunnel between an Interconnect and a single region in a VPC network. The attachment allocates a specific 802.1q VLAN. The VLAN will be used to form a connection between the customer’s GCP network and own network. The VLAN will attach to a Google Cloud Router in the customer VPC.

Note: One BGP session per VLAN attachment. QinQ is not supported.

Google Cloud Router

The Cloud Router is used to dynamically exchange routes between the VPC network and the customer’s on-premises network through BGP. Customer configures BGP session between their on-premises router and Cloud Router. The Cloud Router advertises subnets in the VPC network and propagates learned routes to those subnets. For more information about Cloud Router, see the overview in the Cloud Router documentation.

Pairing Key

Pairing Keys are established when creating the Interconnect attachments. The customer will need a Pairing Key when creating a VXC in the Megaport Portal. Multiple keys are required if the customer desires a redundant solution.

Note: GCI Partner provides access to a customer’s private VMs in Google Cloud. G Suite and other products are public resources and need to be accessed over public peering. Access to other GCP services through APIs on the VMs is allowed.
Megaport does support Direct Peering to access Google’s public resources via Internet Exchanges, MegaIX and AMSIX. Click here for more detail on Direct Peering.

Redundant Connections

Google recommends that customers consider implementing a redundant solution. The customer can configure a single attachment for a non-redundant service. Google provides SLAs of 99.9% and 99.99%. To configure a 99.9% or 99.99% SLA, they will need to create additional VXCs.

How to Create a VXC to Google Cloud Platform


  • The customer must create a Partner Interconnect attachment in Google Cloud Console or gcloud CLI.
  • The Pairing Key is provided as part of the attachment creation and will need to be copied and applied in the Portal.

VXC Deployment Steps

First, you will need to log in to your Google Cloud Console and create a Pairing Key: Google Console Link

Next, click on the main menu in the Google Console, then select  ‘Hybrid Connectivity’ and ‘Interconnect’ from the drop-down.

Next, click ‘Get Started’   You will then be presented with two options. You will select ‘Partner Interconnect’ and ‘Continue

Next, select ‘I already have a service provider’.

Next, you will need to configure your attachment.

To finish the Attachment configuration, fill in the following details:


  • Redundancy: Review the options for redundancy and select. You can create redundant Attachments or single Attachment. In this example we are creating a single Attachment.


  • VPC Network: Select VPC network you want your VPC to connect to.
  • Region: Select region where your attachment will connect to.
  • Could Router: A Cloud Router to associate with this attachment. You can only choose a Cloud Router in the VPC network and region that you selected with an ASN of 16550. If you don’t have an existing Cloud Router, create one with an ASN of 16550. For redundancy, each VLAN attachment must be associated with a unique Cloud Router. Google automatically adds an interface and a BGP peer on the Cloud Router.



VLAN attachment name: lowercase only.

Note: You can add a description. This field is not required.

When finished click ‘Create’.

Next, you will be presented with a Pairing Key. Copy the pairing and click ‘OK’.

Create VXC in the Portal:

  • Create a GCI Partner VXC. Provision a VXC in the Portal to your chosen Google peering location.

To create a GCI Partner VXC, click ‘+Connection’ on the Megaport to which you want to attach your VXC. An example below reflects ‘Google GCI Partner’ as the customer-named Megaport selected.


Next, select Cloud tile.


Next, select the provider as Google.


Copy and paste the Pairing Key from the Google Cloud Console into the field in the right-hand panel and you will be presented with the relevant Google targets based on the region you chose to deploy your GCI Partner connection in the Google Cloud Console. Select your chosen target location for your first connection and select ‘Next’.

To finish the configuration, simply fill in the left-hand panel:

  • Name Your Connection – This is a free text field allowing you to assign an easily identifiable name for this connection.
  • Rate Limit – Enter the same rate you selected for your Google port speed.
  • A-End VLAN – This is the VLAN for this connection that you will receive via the Megaport. This must be a unique VLAN ID on this Port. You can also select the toggle to ‘untag’ this VXC. This will remove the VLAN tagging for this connection but will also mean that only one VXC can be deployed on this Port.

Once you have finished this configuration, you are ready to add the VXC to your cart and configure further VXCs or proceed through the checkout process.

Should you wish to deploy a second GCI Partner connection, (and this is recommended), you will create a second attachment in the Google Console, copy the new Paring Key into the Portal, and repeat the steps above.

Once you have completed and deployed the VXC in the Portal, go back to your attachment in the Google Cloud Console and accept the attached. You will also be provided your private IP address from Google to configure your BGP.

For additional details on your connection reference link ‘Activate Attachment’.

Note: A Google ASN will always be 16550.

Once finished, this will complete your Layer 2 VXC deployment.

For additional details on Partner Interconnect please reference this link: Provisioning Google Partner Interconnect.

©2020 Megaport. Megaport, Virtual Cross Connect, VXC and MegaIX are registered trademarks of Megaport (Services) Pty Ltd ACN 607 432 646.

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