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Is there a way to give an entire EC2 instance to a different party. Basically I was managing a EC2 Server for a client and am now giving up maintenance of the server. I don't want to be billed for this instance anymore. Instead of backing up our application and configuring a new server under the clients account I would prefer to just give them the whole instance that is preconfigured to save time. Is this possible.

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up vote 13 down vote accepted

You cannot transfer an EC2 instance (or any other resources) to a different AWS account.

If the instance is EBS boot (recommended), you might try an approach like this:

  1. Stop the current instance (ec2-stop-instances)

  2. Create an AMI from the instance (ec2-register-image)

  3. Give the second AWS account permission to run that AMI (ec2-modify-image-attribute)

  4. Run a new instance of the AMI under the second AWS account (ec2-run-instances)

DNS would need to be updated to point to the IP address of the new instance (preferably using an Elastic IP Address). Any other AWS/EC2 resources would also need to be copied/recreated in the second account.

After sufficient testing, you might want to free up the original instance (ec2-terminate-instances).

The second account should create their own snapshots / AMIs of the instance to protect themselves if their instance/EBS volume fails after the AMI owned by you is deleted.

Even better, you should have documented/scripted exactly how your instance was created so that the client can reproduce this at will.

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The process is documented. I just didn't want to have to walk through all of the installs and the kernel changes I had to make on another machine. Just trying to save time. –  cjibo Oct 20 '11 at 4:39

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