Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Any ideas to gain access to an amazon EC2 instance of instance-store type (not EBS), without the keypair file? I Can't find the keypair file and it's not an ebs to be able to make an image or snapshot of.

share|improve this question
Restore the keypair file from your backups. You did backup that vital bit of info, right? :-/ – ceejayoz Oct 10 '11 at 19:33
Thanks for the smart tip! :) This was mainly as a result of change of developers. Wouldn't have asked if I could get the keypair file. – Davoud Oct 11 '11 at 21:19

I think the only ways you have a chance of accessing the files on the instance are:

  1. Locate the private ssh key that corresponds to the public key which was used to start the instance, or use another ssh key or password that you might have configured on the instance after it was started.

  2. Find a security vulnerability in the instance that allows you to hack into it.

  3. Ask Amazon for help. This is a long shot. I don't think Amazon will usually help companies get access to disks on instance-store file systems, but I have heard of occasions where it has happened. Having a subscription to paid support would probably improve your chances a bit.

I always recommend using EBS boot instances where possible. This is just one of a number of reasons. If it were an EBS boot instance, then you could get access to the root file system using the following method described on my blog:

Fixing Files on the Root EBS Volume of an EC2 Instance

Unfortunately, this is not possible with instance-store.

share|improve this answer
Thanks for the reply. Instance-store was used because the AMI that was required was only available in instance-store type, which I have been told is due to the limitation imposed by amazon's devpay! – Davoud Oct 11 '11 at 21:23

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.