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You can create, access, and manage your Auto Scaling groups using any one of the following Amazon Web Services (AWS) Auto Scaling interfaces: the Query API, the SDK for Auto Scaling, or the command line interface (CLI).
Auto Scaling Query API—Auto Scaling provides APIs that you can call by submitting a Query Request. Query requests are HTTP or HTTPS requests that use the HTTP verbs GET or POST and a Query parameter named Action. Calling an API using a Query request is the most direct way to access a web service, but requires that your application handle low-level details such as generating the hash to sign the request, and error handling. The benefit of using a Query request is that you have access to the complete functionality of an API. For information on using the Query API, see Use Query Requests to Call Auto Scaling APIs.
AWS SDKs for Auto Scaling— The AWS SDKs provide functions that wrap an API and take care of many of the connection details, such as calculating signatures, handling request retries, and error handling. The SDKs also contain sample code, tutorials, and other resources to help you get started writing applications that call AWS. Calling the wrapper functions in an SDK can greatly simplify the process of writing an AWS application. You can access Auto Scaling programmatically using the SDKs in Java, .NET, PHP, or Ruby.
A disadvantage of using the SDKs is that the implementation of the wrapper functions sometimes lags behind changes to the web service's API, meaning that there may be a period between the time that a new web service API is released and when a wrapper function for it becomes available in the SDKs. You can overcome this disadvantage by using the SDKs to generate a raw Query request. For more information on downloading and using the AWS SDKs, see Use the AWS SDKs.
Auto Scaling Command Line Interface—Auto Scaling provides a command line interface (CLI) to access Auto Scaling functionality without using the APIs, or the SDKs. The CLI wraps the API actions to provide multi-function commands. The CLI commands are written in Java and include shell scripts for both Windows and Linux/Unix/Mac OSX. The shell scripts are available as a self-contained ZIP file. There is no installation required, simply download and unzip it. For more information on installing and using the Auto Scaling command line interface, see Install the Command Line Interface.
You'll need AWS credentials to access the Auto Scaling CLI, the Auto Scaling Query API, and the Auto Scaling SDK. For information on creating and managing your AWS credentials, see Manage Your AWS Credentials.