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Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud
API Reference (API Version 2016-09-15)

DescribeInstances

Describes one or more of your instances.

If you specify one or more instance IDs, Amazon EC2 returns information for those instances. If you do not specify instance IDs, Amazon EC2 returns information for all relevant instances. If you specify an instance ID that is not valid, an error is returned. If you specify an instance that you do not own, it is not included in the returned results.

Recently terminated instances might appear in the returned results. This interval is usually less than one hour.

If you describe instances in the rare case where an Availability Zone is experiencing a service disruption and you specify instance IDs that are in the affected zone, or do not specify any instance IDs at all, the call fails. If you describe instances and specify only instance IDs that are in an unaffected zone, the call works normally.

Request Parameters

The following parameters are for this specific action. For more information about required and optional parameters that are common to all actions, see Common Query Parameters.

DryRun

Checks whether you have the required permissions for the action, without actually making the request, and provides an error response. If you have the required permissions, the error response is DryRunOperation. Otherwise, it is UnauthorizedOperation.

Type: Boolean

Required: No

Filter.N

One or more filters.

  • affinity - The affinity setting for an instance running on a Dedicated Host (default | host).

  • architecture - The instance architecture (i386 | x86_64).

  • availability-zone - The Availability Zone of the instance.

  • block-device-mapping.attach-time - The attach time for an EBS volume mapped to the instance, for example, 2010-09-15T17:15:20.000Z.

  • block-device-mapping.delete-on-termination - A Boolean that indicates whether the EBS volume is deleted on instance termination.

  • block-device-mapping.device-name - The device name for the EBS volume (for example, /dev/sdh or xvdh).

  • block-device-mapping.status - The status for the EBS volume (attaching | attached | detaching | detached).

  • block-device-mapping.volume-id - The volume ID of the EBS volume.

  • client-token - The idempotency token you provided when you launched the instance.

  • dns-name - The public DNS name of the instance.

  • group-id - The ID of the security group for the instance. EC2-Classic only.

  • group-name - The name of the security group for the instance. EC2-Classic only.

  • host-id - The ID of the Dedicated Host on which the instance is running, if applicable.

  • hypervisor - The hypervisor type of the instance (ovm | xen).

  • iam-instance-profile.arn - The instance profile associated with the instance. Specified as an ARN.

  • image-id - The ID of the image used to launch the instance.

  • instance-id - The ID of the instance.

  • instance-lifecycle - Indicates whether this is a Spot Instance or a Scheduled Instance (spot | scheduled).

  • instance-state-code - The state of the instance, as a 16-bit unsigned integer. The high byte is an opaque internal value and should be ignored. The low byte is set based on the state represented. The valid values are: 0 (pending), 16 (running), 32 (shutting-down), 48 (terminated), 64 (stopping), and 80 (stopped).

  • instance-state-name - The state of the instance (pending | running | shutting-down | terminated | stopping | stopped).

  • instance-type - The type of instance (for example, t2.micro).

  • instance.group-id - The ID of the security group for the instance.

  • instance.group-name - The name of the security group for the instance.

  • ip-address - The public IP address of the instance.

  • kernel-id - The kernel ID.

  • key-name - The name of the key pair used when the instance was launched.

  • launch-index - When launching multiple instances, this is the index for the instance in the launch group (for example, 0, 1, 2, and so on).

  • launch-time - The time when the instance was launched.

  • monitoring-state - Indicates whether monitoring is enabled for the instance (disabled | enabled).

  • owner-id - The AWS account ID of the instance owner.

  • placement-group-name - The name of the placement group for the instance.

  • platform - The platform. Use windows if you have Windows instances; otherwise, leave blank.

  • private-dns-name - The private DNS name of the instance.

  • private-ip-address - The private IP address of the instance.

  • product-code - The product code associated with the AMI used to launch the instance.

  • product-code.type - The type of product code (devpay | marketplace).

  • ramdisk-id - The RAM disk ID.

  • reason - The reason for the current state of the instance (for example, shows "User Initiated [date]" when you stop or terminate the instance). Similar to the state-reason-code filter.

  • requester-id - The ID of the entity that launched the instance on your behalf (for example, AWS Management Console, Auto Scaling, and so on).

  • reservation-id - The ID of the instance's reservation. A reservation ID is created any time you launch an instance. A reservation ID has a one-to-one relationship with an instance launch request, but can be associated with more than one instance if you launch multiple instances using the same launch request. For example, if you launch one instance, you'll get one reservation ID. If you launch ten instances using the same launch request, you'll also get one reservation ID.

  • root-device-name - The name of the root device for the instance (for example, /dev/sda1 or /dev/xvda).

  • root-device-type - The type of root device that the instance uses (ebs | instance-store).

  • source-dest-check - Indicates whether the instance performs source/destination checking. A value of true means that checking is enabled, and false means checking is disabled. The value must be false for the instance to perform network address translation (NAT) in your VPC.

  • spot-instance-request-id - The ID of the Spot instance request.

  • state-reason-code - The reason code for the state change.

  • state-reason-message - A message that describes the state change.

  • subnet-id - The ID of the subnet for the instance.

  • tag:key=value - The key/value combination of a tag assigned to the resource, where tag:key is the tag's key.

  • tag-key - The key of a tag assigned to the resource. This filter is independent of the tag-value filter. For example, if you use both the filter "tag-key=Purpose" and the filter "tag-value=X", you get any resources assigned both the tag key Purpose (regardless of what the tag's value is), and the tag value X (regardless of what the tag's key is). If you want to list only resources where Purpose is X, see the tag:key=value filter.

  • tag-value - The value of a tag assigned to the resource. This filter is independent of the tag-key filter.

  • tenancy - The tenancy of an instance (dedicated | default | host).

  • virtualization-type - The virtualization type of the instance (paravirtual | hvm).

  • vpc-id - The ID of the VPC that the instance is running in.

  • network-interface.description - The description of the network interface.

  • network-interface.subnet-id - The ID of the subnet for the network interface.

  • network-interface.vpc-id - The ID of the VPC for the network interface.

  • network-interface.network-interface-id - The ID of the network interface.

  • network-interface.owner-id - The ID of the owner of the network interface.

  • network-interface.availability-zone - The Availability Zone for the network interface.

  • network-interface.requester-id - The requester ID for the network interface.

  • network-interface.requester-managed - Indicates whether the network interface is being managed by AWS.

  • network-interface.status - The status of the network interface (available) | in-use).

  • network-interface.mac-address - The MAC address of the network interface.

  • network-interface.private-dns-name - The private DNS name of the network interface.

  • network-interface.source-dest-check - Whether the network interface performs source/destination checking. A value of true means checking is enabled, and false means checking is disabled. The value must be false for the network interface to perform network address translation (NAT) in your VPC.

  • network-interface.group-id - The ID of a security group associated with the network interface.

  • network-interface.group-name - The name of a security group associated with the network interface.

  • network-interface.attachment.attachment-id - The ID of the interface attachment.

  • network-interface.attachment.instance-id - The ID of the instance to which the network interface is attached.

  • network-interface.attachment.instance-owner-id - The owner ID of the instance to which the network interface is attached.

  • network-interface.addresses.private-ip-address - The private IP address associated with the network interface.

  • network-interface.attachment.device-index - The device index to which the network interface is attached.

  • network-interface.attachment.status - The status of the attachment (attaching | attached | detaching | detached).

  • network-interface.attachment.attach-time - The time that the network interface was attached to an instance.

  • network-interface.attachment.delete-on-termination - Specifies whether the attachment is deleted when an instance is terminated.

  • network-interface.addresses.primary - Specifies whether the IP address of the network interface is the primary private IP address.

  • network-interface.addresses.association.public-ip - The ID of the association of an Elastic IP address with a network interface.

  • network-interface.addresses.association.ip-owner-id - The owner ID of the private IP address associated with the network interface.

  • association.public-ip - The address of the Elastic IP address bound to the network interface.

  • association.ip-owner-id - The owner of the Elastic IP address associated with the network interface.

  • association.allocation-id - The allocation ID returned when you allocated the Elastic IP address for your network interface.

  • association.association-id - The association ID returned when the network interface was associated with an IP address.

Type: array of Filter objects

Required: No

InstanceId.N

One or more instance IDs.

Default: Describes all your instances.

Type: array of Strings

Required: No

MaxResults

The maximum number of results to return in a single call. To retrieve the remaining results, make another call with the returned NextToken value. This value can be between 5 and 1000. You cannot specify this parameter and the instance IDs parameter or tag filters in the same call.

Type: Integer

Required: No

NextToken

The token to request the next page of results.

Type: String

Required: No

Response Elements

The following elements are returned by the service.

nextToken

The token to use to retrieve the next page of results. This value is null when there are no more results to return.

Type: String

requestId

The ID of the request.

Type: String

reservationSet

Zero or more reservations.

Type: array of Reservation objects

Errors

For information about the errors that are common to all actions, see Common Client Errors.

Examples

Example 1

This example describes all instances owned by your AWS account. The example response shows information for one instance in a VPC.

Sample Request

https://ec2.amazonaws.com/?Action=DescribeInstances
&AUTHPARAMS
      

Sample Response

<DescribeInstancesResponse xmlns="http://ec2.amazonaws.com/doc/2016-09-15/">
    <requestId>8f7724cf-496f-496e-8fe3-example</requestId>
    <reservationSet>
        <item>
            <reservationId>r-1234567890abcdef0</reservationId>
            <ownerId>123456789012</ownerId>
            <groupSet/>
            <instancesSet>
                <item>
                    <instanceId>i-1234567890abcdef0</instanceId>
                    <imageId>ami-bff32ccc</imageId>
                    <instanceState>
                        <code>16</code>
                        <name>running</name>
                    </instanceState>
                    <privateDnsName>ip-192-168-1-88.eu-west-1.compute.internal</privateDnsName>
                    <dnsName>ec2-54-194-252-215.eu-west-1.compute.amazonaws.com</dnsName>
                    <reason/>
                    <keyName>my_keypair</keyName>
                    <amiLaunchIndex>0</amiLaunchIndex>
                    <productCodes/>
                    <instanceType>t2.micro</instanceType>
                    <launchTime>2015-12-22T10:44:05.000Z</launchTime>
                    <placement>
                        <availabilityZone>eu-west-1c</availabilityZone>
                        <groupName/>
                        <tenancy>default</tenancy>
                    </placement>
                    <monitoring>
                        <state>disabled</state>
                    </monitoring>
                    <subnetId>subnet-56f5f633</subnetId>
                    <vpcId>vpc-11112222</vpcId>
                    <privateIpAddress>192.168.1.88</privateIpAddress>
                    <ipAddress>54.194.252.215</ipAddress>
                    <sourceDestCheck>true</sourceDestCheck>
                    <groupSet>
                        <item>
                            <groupId>sg-e4076980</groupId>
                            <groupName>SecurityGroup1</groupName>
                        </item>
                    </groupSet>
                    <architecture>x86_64</architecture>
                    <rootDeviceType>ebs</rootDeviceType>
                    <rootDeviceName>/dev/xvda</rootDeviceName>
                    <blockDeviceMapping>
                        <item>
                            <deviceName>/dev/xvda</deviceName>
                            <ebs>
                                <volumeId>vol-1234567890abcdef0</volumeId>
                                <status>attached</status>
                                <attachTime>2015-12-22T10:44:09.000Z</attachTime>
                                <deleteOnTermination>true</deleteOnTermination>
                            </ebs>
                        </item>
                    </blockDeviceMapping>
                    <virtualizationType>hvm</virtualizationType>
                    <clientToken>xMcwG14507example</clientToken>
                    <tagSet>
                        <item>
                            <key>Name</key>
                            <value>Server_1</value>
                        </item>
                    </tagSet>
                    <hypervisor>xen</hypervisor>
                    <networkInterfaceSet>
                        <item>
                            <networkInterfaceId>eni-551ba033</networkInterfaceId>
                            <subnetId>subnet-56f5f633</subnetId>
                            <vpcId>vpc-11112222</vpcId>
                            <description>Primary network interface</description>
                            <ownerId>123456789012</ownerId>
                            <status>in-use</status>
                            <macAddress>02:dd:2c:5e:01:69</macAddress>
                            <privateIpAddress>192.168.1.88</privateIpAddress>
                            <privateDnsName>ip-192-168-1-88.eu-west-1.compute.internal</privateDnsName>
                            <sourceDestCheck>true</sourceDestCheck>
                            <groupSet>
                                <item>
                                    <groupId>sg-e4076980</groupId>
                                    <groupName>SecurityGroup1</groupName>
                                </item>
                            </groupSet>
                            <attachment>
                                <attachmentId>eni-attach-39697adc</attachmentId>
                                <deviceIndex>0</deviceIndex>
                                <status>attached</status>
                                <attachTime>2015-12-22T10:44:05.000Z</attachTime>
                                <deleteOnTermination>true</deleteOnTermination>
                            </attachment>
                            <association>
                                <publicIp>54.194.252.215</publicIp>
                                <publicDnsName>ec2-54-194-252-215.eu-west-1.compute.amazonaws.com</publicDnsName>
                                <ipOwnerId>amazon</ipOwnerId>
                            </association>
                            <privateIpAddressesSet>
                                <item>
                                    <privateIpAddress>192.168.1.88</privateIpAddress>
                                    <privateDnsName>ip-192-168-1-88.eu-west-1.compute.internal</privateDnsName>
                                    <primary>true</primary>
                                    <association>
                                    <publicIp>54.194.252.215</publicIp>
                                    <publicDnsName>ec2-54-194-252-215.eu-west-1.compute.amazonaws.com</publicDnsName>
                                    <ipOwnerId>amazon</ipOwnerId>
                                    </association>
                                </item>
                            </privateIpAddressesSet>
                        </item>
                    </networkInterfaceSet>
                    <ebsOptimized>false</ebsOptimized>
                </item>
            </instancesSet>
        </item>
    </reservationSet>
</DescribeInstancesResponse>

Example 2

This example describes only the instances that have the m1.small or m1.large instance type and an attached Amazon EBS volume that will be deleted on termination.

Sample Request

https://ec2.amazonaws.com/?Action=DescribeInstances
&Filter.1.Name=instance-type
&Filter.1.Value.1=m1.small
&Filter.1.Value.2=m1.large
&Filter.2.Name=block-device-mapping.status
&Filter.2.Value.1=attached
&Filter.3.Name=block-device-mapping.delete-on-termination
&Filter.3.Value.1=true
&AUTHPARAMS

Example 3

This example describes all instances that are running in a VPC.

Sample Request

https://ec2.amazonaws.com/?Action=DescribeInstances
&Filter.1.Name=vpc-id
&Filter.1.Value.1=*
&AUTHPARAMS

Example 4

This example describes any instances that have a tag with the key Owner, regardless of the value of the tag.

Sample Request

https://ec2.amazonaws.com/?Action=DescribeInstances
&Filter.1.Name=tag-key
&Filter.1.Value.1=Owner
&AUTHPARAMS

Example

This example lists only the instances that have a tag with the key Owner and the value DbAdmin.

Sample Request

https://ec2.amazonaws.com/?Action=DescribeInstances
&Filter.1.Name=tag:Owner
&Filter.1.Value.1=DbAdmin
&AUTHPARAMS