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Self Hosting the JavaScript Tracker on GCP


For the purposes of this guide, we are going to assume that you want to serve the standard sp.js from Google Cloud Storage. To accomplish this, you will need the following:

  • An account with Google Cloud
  • Access to Google Cloud Storage (GCS) within your GCP account

Download the JavaScript tracker file

Navigate to and download the latest version of the Snowplow JavaScript Tracker sp.js file

gzip and rename the file

  • rename sp.js to a random 8 character string to reduce the chance of AdBlockers preventing the script from loading e.g. gh7rnghq.js
  • gzip the file to reduce the file size and reduce associated cloud storage and egress costs.

From a terminal / command prompt window, navigate to where you have downloaded the file and run:

gzip -c sp.js > gh7rnghq.js

N.B. on Windows you may need to download the gzip binaries

We will continue referring to the file as sp.js throughout this guide, however where sp.js is mentioned we are referring to your renamed and gzipped file.

Uploading to Google Cloud Storage

Create a storage bucket

  1. Navigate to Google Cloud Console and ensure you are in the Google Cloud Project that you wish to host the Snowplow JavaScript Tracker in
  2. Navigate to the Storage section of Google Cloud Console
  3. Create a new bucket with the following settings
Name (also see Add DNS Record for bucket)For example, [company-name]-sp-js
Storage regionSelect a suitable region, multi-region offers the widest availability and highest SLAs
Storage classStandard
Access control optionsFine grained

Connecting your domain to your storage bucket (optional)

You may wish to connect your domain to your Cloud Storage bucket. In this case your bucket can be named in the format of a subdomain

See Add DNS Record for bucket for additional step you'll need to take.

Upload your file

Click Upload Files and upload your tracker file.

Make future upgrades easier

We recommend that you create a folder for each version of the JavaScript tracker to make future updates easier. If you wish to do this then first create a folder corresponding to the version and place your tracker file in that folder.

Set metadata

Open the Edit Metadata popup using the file menu.

  1. Alter the Content-Encoding value to be gzip
  2. Alter the Cache-Control to max-age=31536000
  3. Save the meta data

Set permissions

Open the Edit Access popup using the file menu.

Add a new item in the table, enter the following details and click Save.


Click Copy URL next to Public to internet in the file browser to get the file's URL e.g. 

Add DNS Record for bucket (optional)

This will only work correctly if:

To connect your domain to your Cloud Storage bucket, you will need to create a CNAME record as below:

Name[your domain]

CNAME redirection only works on HTTP, to ensure this works on HTTPS you must follow this troubleshooting guide.

Update your tracking tags

Update any existing tracking tags to point to your self-hosted file URL.

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