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So in theory, if a person needs valid credentials for an Amazon server, instead of hardcoding in their access key/password, one can call out to for credentials to access certain resources like so:

   js = ''
   open('<role>') { |f|
       f.each_line {|line| js += line}
   credentials = JSON.load(js)

   ndnode[:s3_access_key_id] = credentials['AccessKeyId']
   ndnode[:s3_secret_access_key] = credentials['SecretAccessKey']

and then using the access stuff here:

   conn = => ndnode[:s3_access_key_id],
       :secret_access_key => ndnode[:s3_secret_access_key])
   result = conn.describe_instances(:instance_id => instance_id)

I dislike the idea of hardcoding my access key and password into the source, and I'd like a workaround.

1) Am I and my boss correct that this is a way to do that workaround? 2) If yes to 1, what is the correct way of doing it? If no to 1, is there a way to avoid checking credentials into the source (either here or in a config file) and what is it? 3) In response to @Edwin's response, where in the AWS gem API do I put the security token? Boto has been reported to let me connect with the credentials that I'm given, which means forking off a process, and setting some environment variables, so that Ruby can use the Boto connection's asking for information.

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I don't see a session_token anywhere. You need to use a token with the temporary credentials provided by the instance profile. Are you using the node.js API? – Edwin Jan 30 '13 at 7:46
I don't think so. I inherited some ancient Ruby Chef scripts, so I'm learning Chef, Ruby, and AWS at the same time. I'll try it out. Thanks. – Kevin Meyer Jan 30 '13 at 17:46
After trying it, there's no place in the connection constructor for a token. link. There's a token coming down with the credentials though, so that has to be it. Now to figure out where the 'AWS' rubygem wants me to put the token. Seriously, thanks. – Kevin Meyer Jan 30 '13 at 17:55
Is that what ruby looks like :) Obviously, I can't help you with the ruby, but for the .Net AWS SDK, you use parameterless constructors to indicate that you want to use the Instance Profile Credentials. Make sure you're using a recent version of the SDK. Here's a webpage on how to use profile credentials… – Edwin Jan 30 '13 at 19:05
That did it. Make it an answer and I'll mark it correct. Thanks. – Kevin Meyer Jan 31 '13 at 19:37
up vote 1 down vote accepted

Many of the AWS SDKs have support for IAM Roles in EC2 Profiles built in. With .Net, you use a parameterless constructor to use them. Make sure you're using a recent version of the SDK.

Here's Amazon's page on how to use the Ruby SDK with IAM Roles.

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