How to create AWS Access Key

In this article we will see how to create an AWS Access key, but before that let's see what is an AWS Access Key?

AWS Access keys are long-term credentials for an AWS IAM user, that can be used to sign programmatic requests to the AWS CLI or AWS API.

AWS Access keys consist of two parts

  • Access key ID
  • Secret access key

They are like user name and password, both of them are necessary to authenticate your requests.

The only time that you can view or download the AWS Access Key is when you create them. You cannot recover them later, but you can create new access keys at any time.

Steps to create access keys for an AWS IAM user

  • Sign in to the AWS Management Console and open the IAM console
  • In the navigation pane, click on Users
  • Click on the name of the user whose access keys you want to create
  • Then click on the Security credentials tab
  • In the Access keys section, click on Create access key
  • Once the new Access Key is created, click on show. Once the dialog box closes you will no longer have access to the secret access key again. The credentials should look something like this:
Access key ID: AKIAIOSFODNN7EXAMPLE
Secret access key: wJalrXUtnFEMI/K7MDENG/bPxRfiCYEXAMPLEKEY
  • Click on Download .csv file to download the key pair. Store the keys in a secure location. You will no longer have access to the secret access key once the dialog box closes.
  • Once you download the .csv file, click on Close. When you create an access key, the key pair is active by default, and you can start using the key pair immediately.

Points to be noted

  • You must have permissions to perform the required IAM actions mentioned above, if you are not able to see something or perform any of the operations, contact the Admin at your organisation.
  • Keep the keys confidential and never send them over to anyone over email. At any cost do not share them with anyone outside of your organisation.
  • It is highly recommended not to use the AWS account root user access keys for any task where it's not required.

Hope this article was helpful!

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