I use the term “compute” (or “exec”) to refer to a remote environment in which I can execute a process.
In terms of a toolkit, this is a fundamental component, ie I can create a service, but it needs to run somewhere public to be useful.
EC2 and Google Cloud both provide a great service.
I prefer Ubuntu 16.04, mostly just because it has an organization (Canonical) behind it.
Installing Ubuntu 16.04 VM on GCloud is as easy as selecting Ubuntu for the “boot disk” when creating a new instance.
Install a recent version of Node on Ubuntu:
curl -sL https://deb.nodesource.com/setup_9.x | sudo -E bash - sudo apt-get install -y nodejs
node -v npm -v