AWS Step Functions
Developer Guide


AWS Step Functions places limits on the sizes of certain state machine parameters, such as the number of API actions that you can make during a certain time period or the number of state machines that you can define. Although these limits are designed to prevent a misconfigured state machine from consuming all of the resources of the system, they aren't hard limits.


If a particular stage of your state machine execution or activity execution takes too long, you can configure a state machine timeout to cause a timeout event.

General Limits

Limit Description

State machine name

State machine names must be 1-80 characters in length, must be unique for your account and region, and must not contain any of the following:

  • Whitespace

  • Whitespace characters (? *)

  • Bracket characters (< > { } [ ])

  • Special characters (: ; , \ | ^ ~ $ # % & ` ")

  • Control characters (\\u0000 - \\u001f or \\u007f - \\u009f).

Limits Related to Accounts

Limit Description

Maximum number of activities


Maximum number of state machines 10,000

Maximum number of API actions

Beyond infrequent spikes, applications may be throttled if they make a large number of API actions in a very short period of time.

Maximum request size

1 MB per request. This is the total data size per Step Functions API request, including the request header and all other associated request data.

Limits Related to State Machine Executions

Limit Description

Maximum open executions


Maximum execution time

1 year

Maximum execution history size

25,000 events

Maximum execution idle time

1 year (constrained by execution time limit)

Maximum execution history retention time

90 days. After this time, you can no longer retrieve or view the execution history.There is no further limit to the number of closed executions that Step Functions retains.

Maximum executions displayed in Step Functions console

The Step Functions console displays a maximum of 1,000 executions per state machine. If you have more than 1,000 executions, use the Step Functions API actions or the AWS CLI to display all of your executions.

Limits Related to Task Executions

Limit Description

Maximum task execution time

1 year (constrained by execution time limit)

Maximum time Step Functions keeps a task in the queue

1 year (constrained by execution time limit)

Maximum open activities

1,000 per execution. This limit includes both activities that have been scheduled and those being processed by workers.

Maximum input or result data size for a task, state, or execution

32,768 characters. This limit affects tasks (activity or Lambda function), state or execution result data, and input data when scheduling a task, entering a state, or starting an execution.

Limits Related to API Action Throttling

Some Step Functions API actions are throttled using a token bucket scheme to maintain service bandwidth.


Throttling limits are per account, per region.

API Name Bucket Size Refill Rate per Second
CreateActivity 100 1
CreateStateMachine 100 1
DeleteActivity 100 1
DeleteStateMachine 100 1
DescribeActivity 200 1
DescribeExecution 200 2
DescribeStateMachine 200 1
GetActivityTask 1,000 25
GetExecutionHistory 250 5
ListActivities 100 1
ListExecutions 100 2
ListStateMachines 100 1
SendTaskFailure 1,000 25
SendTaskHeartbeat 1,000 25
SendTaskSuccess 1,000 25
StartExecution 500 25
StopExecution 500 25

Limits Related to State Throttling

Some Step Functions states are throttled using a token bucket scheme to maintain service bandwidth.

For more information, see the ExecutionThrottled CloudWatch metric.

State Type Bucket Size Refill Rate per Second