I have running EC2 instances, but I don't remember launching them
Last updated: 2017-05-13
I checked the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) console, and I have instances running that I don't remember launching. Where might these instances have come from?
To discover how EC2 instances on your account were launched, consider the following:
- Some AWS services launch EC2 instances as part of their function. For instructions on how to delete or terminate these instances, check the documentation for the service that launched the instance.
- Check with other authorized users of your AWS account to see if they launched the instances.
- If you terminated an EC2 instance, but a new instance automatically launched on your account shortly after, see An instance I terminated appears to have re-launched—why?
- If you're charged for EC2 resources that you previously terminated, see Why am I being charged for EC2 when all my instances have been terminated? or Why am I charged for Elastic IP addresses when all my instances have been terminated?
Delete or terminate instances launched by other services
The following services, among others, can be configured to launch EC2 instances:
- AWS CloudFormation: You can configure a CloudFormation template to launch one or more instances on your behalf as part of a stack. For more information, see What is AWS CloudFormation? To terminate the stack and all its resources, see Terminating a Stack.
- AWS Elastic Beanstalk: Elastic Beanstalk environments include EC2 instances and Auto Scaling rules by default. An environment's Auto Scaling rules might launch EC2 instances, depending on how they were configured. For more information, see What Is Elastic Beanstalk? To terminate an environment and all its resources, see Terminate an Environment.
- AWS OpsWorks: AWS OpsWorks stacks can launch groups of AWS resources according to the instructions in the stack's cookbook. If you launch an OpsWorks stack, the cookbook might be configured to launch EC2 instances as part of the stack. To terminate the resources associated with a stack, shut down the stack.
- Amazon EMR: Amazon EMR allows you to launch clusters and nodes, which are essentially groups of EC2 instances. To terminate the instances associated with a cluster, terminate the Amazon EMR cluster.
You might need to complete additional steps before or after terminating resources. Check the documentation for the AWS service for additional information.
Check to see if someone else launched the instances
Another authorized user might have launched the instances as part of a project they were working on. Check with others in your company or on your team, and ask if they launched the instances.
You can use AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) to manage which users can launch instances or use AWS services.