In most cases, a trial period is a great way to get introduced to a new tool and evaluate if its features will meet your needs. But rarely do you get to accomplish many short-term development milestones without entering any payment information. Fortunately, you’ll be surprised at how far you can get within the trial period offered by Snowflake. Anyone who is interested in getting started with Snowflake Data Cloud should test it out using the generous trial period, especially if you want to prep for the Snowflake SnowPro Core Certification or if your organization is interested in exploring Snowflake before making a final decision.
Some details about Snowflake’s trial period:
Includes $400 worth of credits for a 30 day period
Trial can be started using any Snowflake edition, cloud platform, or region
Once the trial is over, the account can be directly transferred to a paid account - no work lost!
If you are new to Snowflake, I would recommend beginning your free trial by using the sample data provided by Snowflake and walking through their really helpful tutorials. This tutorial gives you a thorough introduction to the Snowflake interface and capabilities in just 20 minutes. Completing that should give you a great foundation while still leaving credits left to begin (and maybe even complete!) the setup of your Snowflake platform.
You’ll be amazed at what can you can accomplish if you strategically utilize the free credits that are provided.
First Priority: Security
Before bringing in any of your organization’s sensitive data, you should make sure that all security measures have been implemented. There are a few important steps you should take during the initial setup process to ensure that your data is protected:
Activate a Secure Network Policy
Using the SECURITYADMIN role, navigate to the Policies section of the Account tab. Here you can create a Network Policy that will limit access to the Snowflake account to only the IP Addresses that are listed here. By default, all IP Addresses not listed in the Allowed IP section will be blocked. Don’t forget to activate the policy once it is created!
Enable Multi-Factor Authentication
All users that will have the roles of ACCOUNTADMIN or SECURITYADMIN or any others that will have a high level of access should be required to enroll in MFA. This will add another layer of protection when accessing the warehouse. Each user must enroll themselves by navigating to their account preferences and providing their phone number. Snowflake MFA is powered by DUO, a mobile application that will need to be installed on a mobile device as well.
Enable Secure Single Sign-On
Snowflake allows for secure authentication using most external SAML 2.0-compliant identity providers (IdP). If this is something that is used in your organization, now would be the time to enable this feature for Snowflake. Learn more about the providers that are supported by Snowflake and how you can set up SSO here.
I would also recommend having the ACCOUNTADMIN role create some Resource Monitors so you can monitor the usage of credits and be altered by email if the account usage meets a certain threshold. This is a great tool to help you get the most out of the $400 of trial credits.
Now that you have the proper protection in place, you can begin to add users to the platform and create a strategic role hierarchy. Stay tuned for part two, coming soon.