AWS EC2 Instance Retrieve Version 1

The describe_instances function is the base AWS::EC2 gem call we are using for this handler and returns a multi-level hash/array nest with a top level hash key of "reservationsSet".

The reservationSet has the following pseudo-xml form. Elements with the tag are array members and are referenced by numerical index.

All others are hash members and are references by element/key name.

, , , , , , , , , , ", , , , , , ", , , , ,

To retrieve the imageId, for example, simply flatten the above structure by removing inapplicable items


Treat items as arrays and all other members as hash keys. Doing so, we can reference imageId value in the following manner:


In this handler, we are returning just the more interesting properties for an instance. Future versions may incorporate additional properties.


Name Description
Instance ID The instance id of the EC2 virtual machine that this handler will retrieve details about.

Sample Configuration

Name Description
Instance ID <%= @answers['Instance ID'] %>


Name Description
Virtualization Type The type of virtual machine for the instance. Valid values are "hvm" or "paravirtual".
IP Address The public IP address for the instance.
Kernel ID The operating system associated with the instance's base image
AMI Launcher Index The order in which the instance was launched within a launch group
Private IP Address The internal NAT'ed IP address
Key Name If the instance was launched with a key pair this is the name of the key
Launch Time The timestamp of the last launch of the instance in the format: yyyy-mm-dd hh:mm tz
Instance Type The architecture size of the instance
Image ID The ID of the base AMI for the instance
Private DNS Name Internal hostname of the instance
Root Device Name The internal storage path for the root device, for example "/dev/sda1"
Root Device Type The type of root device. Valid values are: "ebs" - persistent storage, "instance-store" - storage allocated for just the duration of the running instance.
Architecture CPU type for the instance. Valid values are: "i386" or "x86_64"
Monitoring State Describes whether CloudWatch monitoring is attached to the instance. Valid values are: "enabled" or "disabled"
Availability Zone Physical zone associated with the instance. Used to isolate instances for HA.
DNS Name Public hostname for the instance.
Instance State The state of the EC2 instance.


AWS EC2 Instance Retrieve V1.1 (2017-08-24)

  • Update the EC2 gem to AWS SDK 2.2.34.

  • Change Info Values to be more consistent with the other AWS handlers.

  • Internal tweaks to make execution similar to other AWS handlers.

AWS EC2 Instance Retrieve V1 (2011-03-03)

  • Initial version. See README for details.

Related Handlers

AWS EC2 Associate Route Table
Associates a subnet with a route table.
AWS EC2 Authorize Security Group Ingress
Add a security group ingress rule to a security group.
AWS EC2 Create Key Pair As Attachment
Creates a 2048-bit RSA key pair with the specified name and attaches the result to a Kinetic Request CE submission.
AWS EC2 Create Network Interface
Creates a network interface in the specified subnet. For more information see the Amazon Elastic Cloud Compute User Guide online.
AWS EC2 Create Route
Creates a route in the route table within a VPC.
AWS EC2 Create Subnet
Creates a subnet in an existing VPC.
AWS EC2 Create VPC
Creates a VPC
AWS EC2 Delete Key Pair
Deletes the specified key pair, by removing the public key from Amazon EC2.
AWS EC2 Delete Route Table
Deletes a specified route table.
AWS EC2 Delete Security Group
Deletes a security group.
AWS EC2 Delete Tag
Deletes a single tag against a single resource.
AWS EC2 Describe Availability Zone
Returns a single availability zone's Name, State, and Region.
AWS EC2 Detach Internet Gateway
Detaches an Internet gateway from a VPC, disabling connectivity between the Internet and the VPC.
AWS EC2 Image List
Retrieves list of machine images attached to the AWS credentials supplied
AWS EC2 Image Retrieve
Retrieves the properties of the image supplied
AWS EC2 Instance Retrieve Status
Retrieves the status of a particular EC2 instance.
AWS EC2 Instance Start
This handler sends a start request to an AWS EC2 machine instance
AWS EC2 Instance Stop
This handler sends a stop request to an AWS EC2 machine instance
AWS EC2 Modify Instance Attribute
Modifies the specified attribute of the specified instance. You can specify only one attribute at a time.
AWS EC2 Revoke Security Group Ingress
Removes one or more ingress rules from a security group.
AWS EC2 Run Instances
Launches the specified number of instances using an AMI for which you have permissions.