Amazon Simple Storage Service
Developer Guide (API Version 2006-03-01)

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Working with Amazon S3 Buckets

To upload your data (photos, videos, documents etc.) to Amazon S3, you must first create an S3 bucket in one of the AWS Regions. You can then upload any number of objects to the bucket.

In terms of implementation, buckets and objects are resources, and Amazon S3 provides APIs for you to manage them. For example, you can create a bucket and upload objects using the Amazon S3 API. You can also use the Amazon S3 console to perform these operations. The console uses the Amazon S3 APIs to send requests to Amazon S3.

This section explains how to work with buckets. For information about working with objects, see Working with Amazon S3 Objects.

An Amazon S3 bucket name is globally unique, and the namespace is shared by all AWS accounts. This means that after a bucket is created, the name of that bucket cannot be used by another AWS account in any AWS Region until the bucket is deleted. You should not depend on specific bucket naming conventions for availability or security verification purposes. For bucket naming guidelines, see Bucket Restrictions and Limitations.

Amazon S3 creates buckets in a Region you specify. To optimize latency, minimize costs, or address regulatory requirements, choose any AWS Region that is geographically close to you. For example, if you reside in Europe, you might find it advantageous to create buckets in the EU (Ireland) or EU (Frankfurt) Regions. For a list of Amazon S3 Regions, see Regions and Endpoints in the AWS General Reference.

Note

Objects that belong to a bucket that you create in a specific AWS Region never leave that Region, unless you explicitly transfer them to another Region. For example, objects that are stored in the EU (Ireland) Region never leave it.

Creating a Bucket

Amazon S3 provides APIs for creating and managing buckets. By default, you can create up to 100 buckets in each of your AWS accounts. If you need more buckets, you can increase your account bucket limit to a maximum of 1,000 buckets by submitting a service limit increase. To learn how to submit a bucket limit increase, see AWS Service Limits in the AWS General Reference.

When you create a bucket, you provide a name and the AWS Region where you want to create the bucket. For information about naming buckets, see Rules for Bucket Naming.

You can store any number of objects in a bucket.

You can create a bucket using any of the following methods:

  • Using the console

  • Programmatically, using the AWS SDKs

    Note

    If you need to, you can also make the Amazon S3 REST API calls directly from your code. However, this can be cumbersome because it requires you to write code to authenticate your requests. For more information, see PUT Bucket in the Amazon Simple Storage Service API Reference.

    When using the AWS SDKs, you first create a client and then use the client to send a request to create a bucket.  When you create the client, you can specify an AWS Region. US East (N. Virginia) is the default Region. Note the following:

    • If you create a client by specifying the US East (N. Virginia) Region, the client uses the following endpoint to communicate with Amazon S3:

      s3.amazonaws.com

      Note

      • You can use this client to create a bucket in any AWS Region that was launched until March 20, 2019. To create a bucket in Regions that were launched after March 20, 2019, you must create a client specific to the Region in which you want to create the bucket. For more information about enabling or disabling an AWS Region, see AWS Regions and Endpoints in the AWS General Reference.

      • Buckets created after September 30, 2020, will support only virtual hosted-style requests. Path-style requests will continue to be supported for buckets created on or before this date. For more information, see Amazon S3 Path Deprecation Plan – The Rest of the Story.

      In your create bucket request:

      • If you don’t specify a Region, Amazon S3 creates the bucket in the US East (N. Virginia) Region.

      • If you specify an AWS Region, Amazon S3 creates the bucket in the specified Region.

    • If you create a client by specifying any other AWS Region, each of these Regions maps to the Region-specific endpoint:

      s3.<region>.amazonaws.com

      For example, if you create a client by specifying the eu-west-1 Region, it maps to the following Region-specific endpoint:

      s3.eu-west-1.amazonaws.com

      In this case, you can use the client to create a bucket only in the eu-west-1 Region. Amazon S3 returns an error if you specify any other Region in your request to create a bucket.

    • If you create a client to access a dual-stack endpoint, you must specify an AWS Region. For more information, see Dual-Stack Endpoints.

    For a list of available AWS Regions, see Regions and Endpoints in the AWS General Reference.

For examples, see Examples of Creating a Bucket.

About Permissions

You can use your AWS account root credentials to create a bucket and perform any other Amazon S3 operation. However, AWS recommends not using the root credentials of your AWS account to make requests such as to create a bucket. Instead, create an IAM user, and grant that user full access (users by default have no permissions). We refer to these users as administrator users. You can use the administrator user credentials, instead of the root credentials of your account, to interact with AWS and perform tasks, such as create a bucket, create users, and grant them permissions.

For more information, see Root Account Credentials vs. IAM User Credentials in the AWS General Reference and IAM Best Practices in the IAM User Guide.

The AWS account that creates a resource owns that resource. For example, if you create an IAM user in your AWS account and grant the user permission to create a bucket, the user can create a bucket. But the user does not own the bucket; the AWS account to which the user belongs owns the bucket. The user will need additional permission from the resource owner to perform any other bucket operations. For more information about managing permissions for your Amazon S3 resources, see Identity and Access Management in Amazon S3.

Managing Public Access to Buckets

Public access is granted to buckets and objects through access control lists (ACLs), bucket policies, or both. To help you manage public access to Amazon S3 resources, Amazon S3 provides block public access settings. Amazon S3 block public access settings can override ACLs and bucket policies so that you can enforce uniform limits on public access to these resources. You can apply block public access settings to individual buckets or to all buckets in your account.

To help ensure that all of your Amazon S3 buckets and objects have their public access blocked, we recommend that you turn on all four settings for block public access for your account. These settings block public access for all current and future buckets.

Before applying these settings, verify that your applications will work correctly without public access. If you require some level of public access to your buckets or objects, for example to host a static website as described at Hosting a Static Website on Amazon S3, you can customize the individual settings to suit your storage use cases. For more information, see Using Amazon S3 Block Public Access.

Accessing a Bucket

You can access your bucket using the Amazon S3 console. Using the console UI, you can perform almost all bucket operations without having to write any code.

If you access a bucket programmatically, note that Amazon S3 supports RESTful architecture in which your buckets and objects are resources, each with a resource URI that uniquely identifies the resource.

Amazon S3 supports both virtual-hosted–style and path-style URLs to access a bucket.

  • In a virtual-hosted–style URL, the bucket name is part of the domain name in the URL. For example:  

    • http://bucket.s3-aws-region.amazonaws.com

    • http://bucket.s3.amazonaws.com

      Note

      Buckets created in Regions launched after March 20, 2019 are not reachable via the https://bucket.s3.amazonaws.com naming scheme.

    In a virtual-hosted–style URL, you can use either of these endpoints. If you make a request to the http://bucket.s3.amazonaws.com endpoint, the DNS has sufficient information to route your request directly to the Region where your bucket resides.

    For more information, see Virtual Hosting of Buckets.

     

  • In a path-style URL, the bucket name is not part of the domain. For example:

    • Region-specific endpoint, http://s3.aws-region.amazonaws.com/bucket

    • US East (N. Virginia) Region endpoint, http://s3.amazonaws.com/bucket

    In a path-style URL, the endpoint you use must match the Region in which the bucket resides. For example, if your bucket is in the South America (São Paulo) Region, you must use the http://s3.sa-east-1.amazonaws.com/bucket endpoint. If your bucket is in the US East (N. Virginia) Region, you must use the http://s3.amazonaws.com/bucket endpoint.

Important

Because buckets can be accessed using path-style and virtual-hosted–style URLs, we recommend that you create buckets with DNS-compliant bucket names. For more information, see Bucket Restrictions and Limitations.

Accessing an S3 Bucket over IPv6

Amazon S3 has a set of dual-stack endpoints, which support requests to S3 buckets over both Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) and IPv4. For more information, see Making Requests over IPv6.

Bucket Configuration Options

Amazon S3 supports various options for you to configure your bucket. For example, you can configure your bucket for website hosting, add configuration to manage lifecycle of objects in the bucket, and configure the bucket to log all access to the bucket. Amazon S3 supports subresources for you to store, and manage the bucket configuration information. That is, using the Amazon S3 API, you can create and manage these subresources. You can also use the console or the AWS SDKs.

Note

There are also object-level configurations. For example, you can configure object-level permissions by configuring an access control list (ACL) specific to that object.

These are referred to as subresources because they exist in the context of a specific bucket or object. The following table lists subresources that enable you to manage bucket-specific configurations.

Subresource Description

cors (cross-origin resource sharing)

You can configure your bucket to allow cross-origin requests.

For more information, see Enabling Cross-Origin Resource Sharing.

event notification

You can enable your bucket to send you notifications of specified bucket events.

For more information, see Configuring Amazon S3 Event Notifications.

lifecycle

You can define lifecycle rules for objects in your bucket that have a well-defined lifecycle. For example, you can define a rule to archive objects one year after creation, or delete an object 10 years after creation.

For more information, see Object Lifecycle Management.

location

When you create a bucket, you specify the AWS Region where you want Amazon S3 to create the bucket. Amazon S3 stores this information in the location subresource and provides an API for you to retrieve this information.

logging

Logging enables you to track requests for access to your bucket. Each access log record provides details about a single access request, such as the requester, bucket name, request time, request action, response status, and error code, if any. Access log information can be useful in security and access audits. It can also help you learn about your customer base and understand your Amazon S3 bill.  

For more information, see Amazon S3 Server Access Logging.

object locking

To use Amazon S3 object lock, you must enable it for a bucket. You can also optionally configure a default retention mode and period that applies to new objects that are placed in the bucket.

For more information, see Bucket Configuration.

policy and ACL (access control list)

All your resources (such as buckets and objects) are private by default. Amazon S3 supports both bucket policy and access control list (ACL) options for you to grant and manage bucket-level permissions. Amazon S3 stores the permission information in the policy and acl subresources.

For more information, see Identity and Access Management in Amazon S3.

replication

Replication is the automatic, asynchronous copying of objects across buckets in different or the same AWS Regions. For more information, see Replication.

requestPayment

By default, the AWS account that creates the bucket (the bucket owner) pays for downloads from the bucket. Using this subresource, the bucket owner can specify that the person requesting the download will be charged for the download. Amazon S3 provides an API for you to manage this subresource.

For more information, see Requester Pays Buckets.

tagging

You can add cost allocation tags to your bucket to categorize and track your AWS costs. Amazon S3 provides the tagging subresource to store and manage tags on a bucket. Using tags you apply to your bucket, AWS generates a cost allocation report with usage and costs aggregated by your tags.

For more information, see Billing and Usage Reporting for S3 Buckets.

transfer acceleration

Transfer Acceleration enables fast, easy, and secure transfers of files over long distances between your client and an S3 bucket. Transfer Acceleration takes advantage of Amazon CloudFront’s globally distributed edge locations.

For more information, see Amazon S3 Transfer Acceleration.

versioning

Versioning helps you recover accidental overwrites and deletes.

We recommend versioning as a best practice to recover objects from being deleted or overwritten by mistake.

For more information, see Using Versioning.

website

You can configure your bucket for static website hosting. Amazon S3 stores this configuration by creating a website subresource.

For more information, see Hosting a Static Website on Amazon S3.