Using the Amazon Tools for PowerShell - Amazon Tools for PowerShell
Services or capabilities described in Amazon Web Services documentation might vary by Region. To see the differences applicable to the China Regions, see Getting Started with Amazon Web Services in China (PDF).

Using the Amazon Tools for PowerShell

This section provides examples of using the Amazon Tools for PowerShell to access Amazon services. These examples help demonstrate how to use the cmdlets to perform actual Amazon tasks.

PowerShell File Concatenation Encoding

Some cmdlets in the Amazon Tools for PowerShell edit existing files or records that you have in Amazon. An example is Edit-R53ResourceRecordSet, which calls the ChangeResourceRecordSets API for Amazon Route 53.

When you edit or concatenate files in PowerShell 5.1 or older releases, PowerShell encodes the output in UTF-16, not UTF-8. This can add unwanted characters and create results that are not valid. A hexadecimal editor can reveal the unwanted characters.

To avoid converting file output to UTF-16, you can pipe your command into PowerShell's Out-File cmdlet and specify UTF-8 encoding, as shown in the following example:

PS > *some file concatenation command* | Out-File filename.txt -Encoding utf8

If you are running Amazon CLI commands from within the PowerShell console, the same behavior applies. You can pipe the output of an Amazon CLI command into Out-File in the PowerShell console. Other cmdlets, such as Export-Csv or Export-Clixml, also have an Encoding parameter. For a complete list of cmdlets that have an Encoding parameter, and that allow you to correct the encoding of the output of a concatenated file, run the following command:

PS > Get-Command -ParameterName "Encoding"

PowerShell 6.0 and newer, including PowerShell Core, automatically retains UTF-8 encoding for concatenated file output.

Returned Objects for the PowerShell Tools

To make Amazon Tools for PowerShell more useful in a native PowerShell environment, the object returned by a Amazon Tools for PowerShell cmdlet is a .NET object, not the JSON text object that is typically returned from the corresponding API in the Amazon SDK. For example, Get-S3Bucket emits a Buckets collection, not an Amazon S3 JSON response object. The Buckets collection can be placed in the PowerShell pipeline and interacted with in appropriate ways. Similarly, Get-EC2Instance emits a Reservation .NET object collection, not a DescribeEC2Instances JSON result object. This behavior is by design and enables the Amazon Tools for PowerShell experience to be more consistent with idiomatic PowerShell.

The actual service responses are available for you if you need them. They are stored as note properties on the returned objects. For API actions that support paging by using NextToken fields, these are also attached as note properties.

Amazon EC2

This section walks through the steps required to launch an Amazon EC2 instance including how to:

  • Retrieve a list of Amazon Machine Images (AMIs).

  • Create a key pair for SSH authentication.

  • Create and configure an Amazon EC2 security group.

  • Launch the instance and retrieve information about it.

Amazon S3

The section walks through the steps required to create a static website hosted in Amazon S3. It demonstrates how to:

  • Create and delete Amazon S3 buckets.

  • Upload files to an Amazon S3 bucket as objects.

  • Delete objects from an Amazon S3 bucket.

  • Designate an Amazon S3 bucket as a website.

IAM and Amazon Tools for PowerShell

This section demonstrates basic operations in Amazon Identity and Access Management (IAM) including how to:

  • Create an IAM group.

  • Create an IAM user.

  • Add an IAM user to an IAM group.

  • Specify a policy for an IAM user.

  • Set a password and credentials for an IAM user.

Amazon Lambda and Amazon Tools for PowerShell

This section provides a brief overview of the Amazon Lambda Tools for PowerShell module and describes the required steps for setting up the module.

Amazon SNS and Amazon SQS

This section walks through the steps required to subscribe an Amazon SQS queue to an Amazon SNS topic. It demonstrates how to:

  • Create an Amazon SNS topic.

  • Create an Amazon SQS queue.

  • Subscribe the queue to the topic.

  • Send a message to the topic.

  • Receive the message from the queue.


This section provides an example of how to publish custom data to CloudWatch.

  • Publish a Custom Metric to Your CloudWatch Dashboard.

See Also