AWS Developer Tools Blog


The .NET SDK team is aware that some customers are having issues using the Amazon.Util.ProfileManager.RegisterProfile method, so this blog will attempt to explain what this method does, when it should be used, and more importantly, why it should never be called inside your development application.

We discussed RegisterProfile in an earlier blog post about storing and loading AWS credentials. Take a look at this post for more information about profiles and how they can be used to simplify local credentials management.

Let’s start with what Amazon.Util.ProfileManager.RegisterProfile is and how it should be used. The RegisterProfile method creates a new profile or updates an existing profile with a given set of credentials. After this is done, the profile can be used in the SDK, PowerShell, or the Visual Studio Toolkit to make AWS calls with a set of credentials, without having to constantly include the credentials in your code.

When using the SDK, we can access our profile by specifying it in our app.config/web.config file:

      <add key="AWSProfileName" value="profile-name"/>

Or explicitly with the following code:

var credentials = new Amazon.Runtime.StoredProfileAWSCredentials("profile-name");

In PowerShell, the profile can be accessed like this:

Set-AWSCredentials -ProfileName development

Finally, when using the Visual Studio Toolkit, you simply choose the desired profile from the Profile drop-down menu.

In this sense, RegisterProfile is a utility method and should be called only once: when you want to configure or update your current environment. After a profile is configured, you should not be making calls to RegisterProfile.

You should not be calling this method in your main AWS application. After you’ve configured your environment with the credentials you want to use, calls to RegisterProfile will not have any effect and, as illustrated in a recent forum post, in some cases can actually cause your application to crash. (Unfortunately, if you are running your application under IIS, the SDK credential store will not work. The credentials are encrypted for the currently logged-on user, and the system account running IIS will not be able to decrypt them. In this case, you could use the shared credentials with the AWSProfileLocation app setting, as outlined above.)

We hope this clears up the confusion about Amazon.Util.ProfileManager.RegisterProfile. Happy coding!