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AWS X-Ray
Developer Guide

AWS X-Ray Permissions

You can use AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) to grant X-Ray permissions to users and compute resources in your account. IAM controls access to the X-Ray service at the API level to enforce permissions uniformly, regardless of which client (console, AWS SDK, AWS CLI) your users employ.

To use the X-Ray console to view service maps and segments, you only need read permissions. To enable console access, add the AWSXrayReadOnlyAccess managed policy to your IAM user.

For local development and testing, create an IAM user with read and write permissions. Generate access keys for the user and store them in the standard AWS SDK location. You can use these credentials with the X-Ray daemon, the AWS CLI, and the AWS SDK.

To deploy your instrumented app to AWS, create an IAM role with write permissions and assign it to the resources running your application.

IAM Managed Policies for X-Ray

To make granting permissions easy, IAM supports managed policies for each service. A service can update these managed policies with new permissions when it releases new APIs. AWS X-Ray provides managed policies for read only, write only, and read/write use cases.

  • AWSXrayReadOnlyAccess – Read permissions for using the X-Ray console, AWS CLI, or AWS SDK to get trace data and service maps from the X-Ray API.

    {
        "Version": "2012-10-17",
        "Statement": [
            {
                "Effect": "Allow",
                "Action": [
                    "xray:BatchGetTraces",
                    "xray:GetServiceGraph",
                    "xray:GetTraceGraph",
                    "xray:GetTraceSummaries"
                ],
                "Resource": [
                    "*"
                ]
            }
        ]
    }
  • AWSXrayWriteOnlyAccess – Write permissions for using the X-Ray daemon, AWS CLI, or AWS SDK to upload segment documents and telemetry to the X-Ray API.

    {
        "Version": "2012-10-17",
        "Statement": [
            {
                "Effect": "Allow",
                "Action": [
                    "xray:PutTraceSegments",
                    "xray:PutTelemetryRecords"
                ],
                "Resource": [
                    "*"
                ]
            }
        ]
    }
  • AWSXrayFullAccess – Read/write permissions.

    {
        "Version": "2012-10-17",
        "Statement": [
            {
                "Effect": "Allow",
                "Action": [
                    "xray:*"
                ],
                "Resource": [
                    "*"
                ]
            }
        ]
    }
  • AmazonS3ReadOnlyAccess – Permission for the user or resource to download the X-Ray daemon from Amazon S3.

To add a managed policy to an IAM user, group, or role

  1. Open the IAM console.

  2. Open the role associated with your instance profile, an IAM user, or an IAM group.

  3. Under Permissions, attach the managed policy.

Running Your Application Locally

Your instrumented application sends trace data to the X-Ray daemon. The daemon buffers segment documents and uploads them to the X-Ray service in batches. The daemon needs write permissions to upload trace data and telemetry to the X-Ray service.

When you run the daemon locally, store your IAM user's access key and secret key in a file named credentials in a folder named .aws in your user folder.

Example ~/.aws/credentials

[default]
aws_access_key_id=AKIAIOSFODNN7EXAMPLE
aws_secret_access_key=wJalrXUtnFEMI/K7MDENG/bPxRfiCYEXAMPLEKEY

If you already configured credentials for use with the AWS SDK or AWS CLI, the daemon can use those. If multiple profiles are available, the daemon uses the default profile.

Running Your Application in AWS

When you run your application on AWS, use a role to grant permission to the Amazon EC2 instance or Lambda function that runs the daemon.

  • Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud – Create an IAM role and attach it to the EC2 instance as an instance profile.

  • Amazon EC2 Container Service – Create an IAM role and attach it to container instances as a container instance IAM role.

  • AWS Elastic Beanstalk – Elastic Beanstalk includes X-Ray permissions in its default instance profile. You can use the default instance profile, or add write permissions to a custom instance profile.

  • AWS Lambda – Add write permissions to your function's execution role.

To create a role for use with X-Ray

  1. Open the IAM console.

  2. Choose Roles.

  3. Choose Create New Role.

  4. For Role Name, type xray-application. Choose Next Step.

  5. For Role Type, choose Amazon EC2.

  6. Attach managed policies to give your application access to AWS services.

    • AWSXrayWriteOnlyAccess – Gives the X-Ray daemon permission to upload trace data.

    • AmazonS3ReadOnlyAccess (Amazon EC2 only) – Gives the instance permission to download the X-Ray daemon from Amazon S3.

    If your application uses the AWS SDK to access other services, add policies that grant access to those services.

  7. Choose Next Step.

  8. Choose Create Role.