Amazon Elastic Container Service
Developer Guide (API Version 2014-11-13)

Getting Started with Amazon ECS using Fargate

Let's get started with Amazon Elastic Container Service (Amazon ECS) by creating a task definition, scheduling tasks, and configuring a cluster in the Amazon ECS console.

The Amazon ECS first run wizard will guide you through the process to get started. The wizard gives you the option of creating a cluster and launching our sample web application, or if you already have a Docker image you would like to launch in Amazon ECS, you can create a task definition with that image and use that for your cluster instead.


Before you begin, be sure that you've completed the steps in Setting Up with Amazon ECS and that your AWS user has the required permissions specified in the Amazon ECS First Run Wizard IAM policy example.

Step 1: Create a container and task definition

A task definition is like a blueprint for your application. Each time you launch a task in Amazon ECS, you specify a task definition so the service knows which Docker image to use for containers, how many containers to use in the task, and the resource allocation for each container.

  1. Open the Amazon ECS console first run wizard at

  2. Configure your container definition parameters.

    For Container definition, the first run wizard comes preloaded with the sample-app and nginx container definitions in the console. You can optionally rename the container or review and edit the resources used by the container (such as CPU units and memory limits) by choosing Edit and editing the values shown.

    For more information on what each of these container definition parameters does, see Container Definitions.


    If you are using an Amazon ECR image in your container definition, be sure to use the full registry/repository:tag naming for your Amazon ECR images. For example,

  3. For Task definition, the first run wizard defines a task definition to use with the preloaded container definitions. You can optionally rename the task definition and edit the resources used by the task (such as the Task memory and Task CPU values) by choosing Edit and editing the values shown.

    Task definitions created in the first run wizard are limited to a single container for simplicity's sake. You can create multi-container task definitions later in the Amazon ECS console.

    For more information on what each of these task definition parameters does, see Task Definition Parameters.

  4. Choose Next to continue.

Step 2: Configure service

In this section of the wizard, you select how you would like to configure the Amazon ECS service that is created from your task definition. A service launches and maintains a specified number of copies of the task definition in your cluster. The Amazon ECS sample application is a web-based "Hello World" style application that is meant to run indefinitely, so by running it as a service, it will restart if the task becomes unhealthy or unexpectedly stops.

The first run wizard comes preloaded with a service definition, and you can see the sample-app-service service defined in the console. You can optionally rename the service or review and edit the details by choosing Edit and doing the following:

  1. In the Service name field, select a name for your service.

  2. In the Number of desired tasks field, enter the number of tasks you would like to launch with your specified task definition.

  3. In the Security Group field, specify a range of IPv4 addresses to allow inbound traffic from, in CIDR block notation. For example,

  4. (Optional) You can choose to use an Application Load Balancer with your service. When a task is launched from a service that is configured to use a load balancer, the task is launched on is registered with the load balancer and traffic from the load balancer is distributed across the instances in the load balancer. For more details, see Introduction to Application Load Balancers.


    Application Load Balancers do incur cost while they exist in your AWS resources. For more information on Application Load Balancer pricing, see Application Load Balancer Pricing.

    Complete the following steps to use a load balancer with your service.

    1. In the Application load balancing section, choose the Load balancer listener port. The default value here are set up for the sample application, but you can configure different listener options for the load balancer. For more information, see Service Load Balancing.

    2. In the Application Load Balancer target group field, specify a name for the target group.

  5. Review your service settings and click Save, Next.

Step 3: Configure cluster

In this section of the wizard, you name your cluster, and then Amazon ECS take cares of the networking and IAM configuration for you.

  1. In the Cluster name field, choose a name for your cluster.

  2. Click Next to proceed.

Step 4: Review

  1. Review your task definition, task configuration, and cluster configurations and click Create to finish. You are directed to a Launch Status page that shows the status of your launch and describes each step of the process (this can take a few minutes to complete while your Auto Scaling group is created and populated).

  2. After the launch is complete, choose View service to view your service in the Amazon ECS console.

Step 5: (Optional) View your service's containers

If your service is a web-based application, such as the Amazon ECS sample application, you can view its containers with a web browser.

  1. On the Service: service-name page, choose the Tasks tab.

  2. Choose a task from the list of tasks in your service.

  3. In the Network section, choose the ENI Id for your task. This will take you to the EC2 console where you can view the details of the network interface associated with your task, including it's IPv4 Public IP address.

  4. Enter the IPv4 Public IP address in your web browser and you should see a web page that displays the Amazon ECS sample application.