AWS For Admins For Dummies
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The Command-Line Interface (CLI) presents an uncomfortable environment for many people. Given that the CLI for the Amazon Web Services (AWS) free tier relies on Linux and that many administrators aren't familiar with the operating system, the situation becomes even less comfortable.

However, by using the AWS consoles as much as possible, you can reduce the need for the CLI to a minimum. Even so, you find that some tasks still require the CLI, which is where this handy list of CLI commands comes into play. (Information you must replace with a specific entry appears in italics.)

  • cat /proc/mounts: Displays a list of mounted drives.
  • ls: Lists the contents of a directory. You may optionally provide a directory path to list.
  • rm : Removes the specified file from the current directory.
  • rpm -ql '': Obtains a list of utilities contained within a package.
  • sudo chmod : Changes the access mode for the current directory.
  • sudo mkdir : Creates a new directory to hold files.
  • sudo reboot: Reboots the remove AWS system so that you can see the results of any changes you make.
  • sudo rmdir : Removes the specified directory.
  • sudo yum groupinstall "": Installs the specified group of packages.
  • sudo yum search '': Searches for a package.
  • sudo yum update: Performs required AWS updates.
  • sudo yum -y install : Installs a required support service or feature onto the AWS system.
Linux provides the same wealth of CLI commands that Windows does, but these are absolute essentials when working with AWS. You can find many sources for these commands online, but one of the better resources appears at Linux Command Directory. The important thing is to remember to use the consoles when you can in order to keep things simple.

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John Paul Mueller is a prolific technical writer and editor with 101 books and 600 articles to his credit. His topics range from networking and home security to database management and heads-down programming, and his editing skills have helped more than 63 authors refine their manuscripts. Visit his blog at

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