Useful snippets for Google Colaboratory. Free GPU included.

Andrey Nikishaev
Apr 23, 2018 · 3 min read

For people who are new or still didn’t use it — Google Colab is Jupyter service with dedicated server(with GPU) that you get free for about 12 hours(after it you need to reinitialize it). So it’s good place where you can test your Python scripts, or use it while you are learning Machine Learning & Data Science.

In my work i often use Colab, for two reason. First it gives free computation power and even free Nvidia Tesla K80. Second it’s very convenient way of sharing some ML & DS examples to people (which i use in every article on Medium).

Here i gathered useful snippets that i use every day, that makes my life easier :)

Connecting Google drive to your instance

# Create drive folder
!mkdir -p drive
!apt-get install -y -qq software-properties-common python-software-properties module-init-tools
!add-apt-repository -y ppa:alessandro-strada/ppa 2>&1 > /dev/null
!apt-get update -qq 2>&1 > /dev/null
!apt-get -y install -qq google-drive-ocamlfuse fuse
# Authorize instance to use Google Drive
from google.colab import auth
from oauth2client.client import GoogleCredentials
creds = GoogleCredentials.get_application_default()
import getpass
!google-drive-ocamlfuse -headless -id={creds.client_id} -secret={creds.client_secret} < /dev/null 2>&1 | grep URL
vcode = getpass.getpass()
!echo {vcode} | google-drive-ocamlfuse -headless -id={creds.client_id} -secret={creds.client_secret}
# Connect drive to folder
!google-drive-ocamlfuse drive

from new release all above can be replaced with

from google.colab import drive

Don’t forget to copy all intensive reading data from Drive to instance to make access faster.

Upload/Download files from instance

from google.colab import files
def upload(path):
uploaded = files.upload()
with open(path,’wb’) as fp:

def download(path):

Use Facets


Then just write (example):

FacetsOverview(df_train, df_test)

Running TensorBoard on instance

Then just open url that will be printed and that’s all.

Connecting to instance over ssh

All your data is in /content/ directory.

Right now free Ngrok account doesn’t support 2 simultaneous tunnels, so if you are using one for TensorBoard, you will have to kill it.
You can do it with command:

!kill $(ps aux | grep './ngrok' | awk '{print $2}')

Accessing web cam

Downloading/Uploading data to Kaggle


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Machine Learning World

The best about Machine Learning, Computer Vision, Deep Learning, Natural language processing and other.

Andrey Nikishaev

Written by

Machine Learning and Computer Vision Researcher. Founder LearnML.Today

Machine Learning World

The best about Machine Learning, Computer Vision, Deep Learning, Natural language processing and other.

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