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AWS Toolkit for Visual Studio
User Guide (Version v1.30)

Setting Up the AWS Toolkit for Visual Studio

Follow the steps in this topic to install and configure the Toolkit for Visual Studio.

Prerequisites

The Toolkit for Visual Studio has the following prerequisites.

  • An AWS account. To get an AWS account, go to the AWS home page and choose Sign Up Now. This account will enable you to use AWS services.

  • Supported operating systems: Microsoft Windows 8, Windows 7, and Windows Vista.

    We recommend that you install the latest service packs and updates for the version of Windows you are using.

  • Visual Studio 2010 or later.

    We recommend that you install the latest service packs and updates.

    Note

    You can install the Toolkit for Visual Studio on Visual Studio Express, but the installation includes only the AWS project templates and the standalone deployment tool. Visual Studio Express does not support third-party extensions, such as AWS Explorer.

Installation

The Toolkit for Visual Studio is part of the AWS Tools for Windows. If you have Visual Studio 2010 or later, install the AWS Tools for Windows as follows:

To install the AWS Tools for Windows

  1. Go to AWS Toolkit for Visual Studio.

  2. In the Download section, choose AWS Toolkit for Visual Studio to download the installer.

  3. To start the installation, run the downloaded installer and follow the instructions.

    Tip

    By default, the AWS Tools for Windows are installed in the Program Files directory, which requires administrator privileges. To install the AWS Tools for Windows as a non-administrator, specify a different installation directory.

Note

You can install the Toolkit for Visual Studio for Visual Studio 2008 from http://sdk-for-net.amazonwebservices.com/latest/AWSToolkitForVisualStudio2008.msi, but this version of the toolkit is no longer supported.

Specifying Credentials

Before you can use the Toolkit for Visual Studio, you must provide one or more sets of valid AWS credentials. These credentials allow you to access your AWS resources through the Toolkit for Visual Studio. They are also used to sign programmatic web services requests, so AWS can verify the request comes from an authorized source.

Important

AWS credentials consist of an access key and a secret key. We recommend that you do not use your account's root credentials. Instead, create one or more IAM users, and then use those credentials. For more information, see Using IAM Users and Best Practices for Managing AWS Access Keys.

The Toolkit for Visual Studio supports multiple sets of credentials from any number of accounts. Each set is referred to as a profile. When you add a profile to Toolkit for Visual Studio, the credentials are encrypted and stored in the SDK Store, which is also used by the AWS SDK for .NET and AWS Tools for Windows PowerShell. The SDK Store is separate from your project directories so that it cannot be unintentionally committed to a public repository. To use the Toolkit for Visual Studio, you must add at least one profile to the SDK Store.

To add a profile to the SDK Store

  1. Open AWS Explorer. In Visual Studio, choose the View menu, and then choose AWS Explorer or press Ctrl+K, and then press the A key.

  2. Choose the New Account Profile icon to the right of the Profile list.

  3. In the New Account Profile dialog box, type the following data:

    Profile Name

    (Required) The profile's display name.

    Access Key ID

    (Required) The access key.

    Secret Access Key

    (Required) The secret key.

    Account Number

    (Optional) The credential's account number. The Toolkit for Visual Studio uses the account number to construct Amazon resource names (ARNs).

    Account Type

    (Required) The account type. This entry determines which regions are displayed in AWS Explorer when you specify this profile.

    • Standard AWS Account

      • If you choose AWS GovCloud (US) Account, AWS Explorer displays only the AWS GovCloud (US) region.

      • If you choose Amazon AWS Account – China (Beijing) Region, AWS Explorer displays only the China (Beijing) region.

    New Account Profile dialog box
  4. To add the profile to the SDK Store, choose OK. To use a profile in your project, choose the profile name. Toolkit for Visual Studio adds a reference to the profile to the project's App.config or Web.config file.

After you have added the first profile:

  • To add another profile, repeat the procedure.

  • To delete a profile, choose it, and then choose the Delete Profile icon.

  • To edit a profile, choose the Edit Profile icon to display the Edit Profile dialog box.

    For example, if you have rotated an IAM user's credentials—a recommended practice—you can edit the profile to update the user's credentials in the SDK Store. For more information, see IAM Credential Rotation.

You can also add profiles to the SDK Store when you create an AWS project. Before Visual Studio creates the project files, it displays the AWS Access Credentials dialog box. You can choose a profile from the SDK Store or create one.

AWS Access Credentials dialog box

Uninstalling

To uninstall the AWS Toolkit for Visual Studio, you must uninstall the AWS Tools for Windows. To uninstall the AWS Tools for Windows, perform the following steps:

To uninstall the AWS Tools for Windows

  1. In Control Panel, open Programs and Features.

    Tip

    To open Programs and Features directly, from a command prompt, run the following:

    appwiz.cpl
  2. Choose AWS Tools for Windows, and then choose Uninstall.

    Programs and Features
  3. If prompted, choose Yes.

Uninstalling the AWS Tools for Windows does not remove the Samples directory. This directory is preserved in case you have modified the samples. You will have to manually remove this directory.