The Amazon Linux AMI is a supported and maintained Linux image provided by Amazon Web Services for use on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2). It is designed to provide a stable, secure, and high performance execution environment for applications running on Amazon EC2. It also includes packages that enable easy integration with AWS, including launch configuration tools and many popular AWS libraries and tools. Amazon Web Services provides ongoing security and maintenance updates to all instances running the Amazon Linux AMI. The Amazon Linux AMI is provided at no additional charge to Amazon EC2 users.
The Amazon Linux AMI includes packages and configurations that provide tight integration with Amazon Web Services. This allows the Amazon Linux AMI to launch and work correctly within Amazon EC2 from the first boot. The Amazon Linux AMI comes pre-installed with many AWS API tools and CloudInit. AWS API tools enable scripting of important provisioning tasks from within an Amazon EC2 instance. CloudInit allows passing instance configuration actions to instances at launch time via the EC2 user-data fields, enabling remote configuration of Amazon EC2 instances.
The configuration of the Amazon Linux AMI enhances security by focusing on two main security goals: limiting access and reducing software vulnerabilities. The Amazon Linux AMI limits remote access capabilities by using SSH key pairs and by disabling remote root login. Additionally, the Amazon Linux AMI reduces the number of non-critical packages which are installed on your instance, limiting your exposure to potential security vulnerabilities. Security updates are automatically applied on the initial boot of the AMI. Upon login, the Message of the Day (/etc/motd) indicates whether or not any additional updates are available.
The Amazon Linux AMI is designed to be used in conjunction with online package repositories hosted in each Amazon EC2 region. These repositories provide ongoing updates to packages in the Amazon Linux AMI as well as access to hundreds of additional common open source server applications. The repositories are available in all regions and are accessed via yum update tools. Hosting repositories in each region allows updates to be deployed quickly and without any data transfer charges. Access to the Extra Packages for Enterprise Linux (EPEL 6) repository is configured, though not enabled by default. The EPEL 6 repository provides additional packages beyond those shipped in the Amazon Linux AMI repositories, but these third party packages are not supported.
By default, the Amazon Linux AMI includes a small set of services, utilities, and tools for integration with AWS. The Amazon Linux AMI is designed to provide a functional base, allowing you to add on (via the package repositories) additional utilities and services. Starting with a smaller base of packages means there are fewer components to maintain, as well as less surface area for security exploits.
The Amazon Linux AMI is available in 32 and 64 bit formats in all AWS regions. See the supported Amazon Linux AMI image and instance type combinations for more information.
Support for installation and use of the base Amazon Linux AMI is included through subscriptions to AWS Support. For more information on AWS Support please visit the AWS Support web page.
Customers can get started by launching the latest Amazon Linux AMI in Amazon EC2. The Amazon Linux AMI is updated regularly with security and feature enhancements. Customers who do not need to preserve data or customizations on their running Amazon Linux AMI instances can simply re-launch new instances with the latest updated Amazon Linux AMI. Customers who do need to preserve data or customizations on their running Amazon Linux AMI instances can maintain those instances through the Amazon Linux AMI yum repositories.
As the Amazon Linux AMI is updated, all of the updated packages are provided through these repositories and customers can chose to apply these updates to their running instances. Older versions of the AMI and updated packages will continue to be available for launch in Amazon EC2 and for installation from the Amazon Linux AMI yum repository even as new Amazon Linux AMI versions are released. In some cases, customers seeking support for an older version of the Amazon Linux AMI through AWS Support may be asked to move to newer versions as part of the support process.
Security updates are provided via the Amazon Linux AMI yum repositories as well as via updated Amazon Linux AMIs. Security alerts are published in the Amazon Linux AMI Security Center. For more information on AWS security policies or to report a security problem, please visit the overall AWS Security Center.
The Amazon Linux AMI is provided at no additional charge to Amazon EC2 users. Standard Amazon EC2 and AWS charges apply for running instances and other services.
Amazon Linux AMI 2014.03 was released on 2014-03-27.
Your use of AWS, including use of the Amazon Linux AMI, is subject to the Amazon Web Services Customer Agreement.