Setting up DynamoDB (web service) - Amazon DynamoDB
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Setting up DynamoDB (web service)

To use the Amazon DynamoDB web service:

  1. Sign up for Amazon.

  2. Get an Amazon access key (used to access DynamoDB programmatically).


    If you plan to interact with DynamoDB only through the Amazon Web Services Management Console, you don't need an Amazon access key, and you can skip ahead to Using the console.

  3. Configure your credentials (used to access DynamoDB programmatically).

Signing up for Amazon

To use the DynamoDB service, you must have an Amazon account. If you don't already have an account, you are prompted to create one when you sign up. You're not charged for any Amazon services that you sign up for unless you use them.

To sign up for Amazon

  1. Open

  2. Follow the online instructions.

    Part of the sign-up procedure involves receiving a phone call and entering a verification code on the phone keypad.

Getting an Amazon access key

Before you can access DynamoDB programmatically or through the Amazon Command Line Interface (Amazon CLI), you must have an Amazon access key. You don't need an access key if you plan to use the DynamoDB console only.

Access keys consist of an access key ID and secret access key, which are used to sign programmatic requests that you make to Amazon. If you don't have access keys, you can create them from the Amazon Web Services Management Console. As a best practice, do not use the Amazon Web Services account root user access keys for any task where it's not required. Instead, create a new administrator IAM user with access keys for yourself.

The only time that you can view or download the secret access key is when you create the keys. You cannot recover them later. However, you can create new access keys at any time. You must also have permissions to perform the required IAM actions. For more information, see Permissions required to access IAM resources in the IAM User Guide.

To create access keys for an IAM user

  1. Sign in to the Amazon Web Services Management Console and open the IAM console at

  2. In the navigation pane, choose Users.

  3. Choose the name of the user whose access keys you want to create, and then choose the Security credentials tab.

  4. In the Access keys section, choose Create access key.

  5. To view the new access key pair, choose Show. You will not have access to the secret access key again after this dialog box closes. Your credentials will look something like this:


    • Secret access key: wJalrXUtnFEMI/K7MDENG/bPxRfiCYEXAMPLEKEY

  6. To download the key pair, choose Download .csv file. Store the keys in a secure location. You will not have access to the secret access key again after this dialog box closes.

    Keep the keys confidential in order to protect your Amazon Web Services account and never email them. Do not share them outside your organization, even if an inquiry appears to come from Amazon or No one who legitimately represents Amazon will ever ask you for your secret key.

  7. After you download the .csv file, choose Close. When you create an access key, the key pair is active by default, and you can use the pair right away.

Related topics

Configuring your credentials

Before you can access DynamoDB programmatically or through the Amazon CLI, you must configure your credentials to enable authorization for your applications.

There are several ways to do this. For example, you can manually create the credentials file to store your access key ID and secret access key. You also can use the aws configure command of the Amazon CLI to automatically create the file. Alternatively, you can use environment variables. For more information about configuring your credentials, see the programming-specific Amazon SDK developer guide.

To install and configure the Amazon CLI, see Using the Amazon CLI.