How to Install s3cmd in Linux and Manage Amazon s3 Buckets

s3cmd is a command line utility used for creating s3 buckets, uploading, retrieving and managing data to Amazon s3 storage. This article will help you to how to use install s3cmd on CentOS, RHEL, OpenSUSE, Ubuntu, Debian & LinuxMint systems and manage s3 buckets via command line in easy steps. To install s3cmd on windows servers read article install s3cmd in Windows.

We can also mount s3 bucket as local drive in our system using S3FS with FUSE. To configure it read next article mount s3 bucket on Linux.


Install s3cmd Package

s3cmd is available in default rpm repositories for CentOS,RHEL and Ubuntu systems, You can install it using simply executing following commands on your system.

# yum install s3cmd
On Ubuntu/Debian:
$ sudo apt-get install s3cmd
On SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11:
# zypper addrepo
# zypper install s3cmd
Install Latest s3cmd using Source

If you are not getting latest version of s3cmd using above package managers, You can install last s3cmd version on your system using source code. Visit this url or use below command to download latest version of s3cmd.

$ wget
$ tar xzf s3cmd-1.6.1.tar.gz

Now install it using below command with source files.

$ cd s3cmd-1.6.1
$ sudo python install
Configure s3cmd Environment

In order to configure s3cmd we would require Access Key and Secret Key of your S3 Amazon account. Get these security keys from aws securityCredentials page. If will prompt to login to your amazon account.

After getting key files, use below command to configure s3cmd.

# s3cmd --configure
Enter new values or accept defaults in brackets with Enter.
Refer to user manual for detailed description of all options.

Access key and Secret key are your identifiers for Amazon S3
Access Key: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Secret Key: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Encryption password is used to protect your files from reading
by unauthorized persons while in transfer to S3
Encryption password: xxxxxxxxxx
Path to GPG program [/usr/bin/gpg]:

When using secure HTTPS protocol all communication with Amazon S3
servers is protected from 3rd party eavesdropping. This method is
slower than plain HTTP and can't be used if you're behind a proxy
Use HTTPS protocol [No]: Yes

New settings:
  Access Key: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  Secret Key: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  Encryption password: xxxxxxxxxx
  Path to GPG program: /usr/bin/gpg
  Use HTTPS protocol: True
  HTTP Proxy server name:
  HTTP Proxy server port: 0

Test access with supplied credentials? [Y/n] Y
Please wait, attempting to list all buckets...
Success. Your access key and secret key worked fine :-)

Now verifying that encryption works...
Success. Encryption and decryption worked fine :-)

Save settings? [y/N] y
Configuration saved to '/root/.s3cfg'
Uses of s3cmd Command Line

Once configuration is successfully completed. Now find below command details to how to manage s3 buckets using commands.

1. List All S3 Bucket

Use following command to list all s3 buckets in your aws account.

# s3cmd ls
2. Creating New Bucket

To create a new bucket in Amazon s3 use below command. It will create bucket named tecadmin in S3 account.

# s3cmd mb s3://tecadmin

Bucket 's3://tecadmin/' created
3. Uploading file in Bucket

Below command will upload file file.txt to s3 bucket using s3cmd command.

# s3cmd put file.txt s3://tecadmin/

file.txt -> s3://tecadmin/file.txt  [1 of 1]
 190216 of 190216   100% in    0s  1668.35 kB/s  done
4. Uploading Directory in Bucket

If we need to upload entire directory use -r to upload it recursively like below.

# s3cmd put -r backup s3://tecadmin/

backup/file1.txt -> s3://tecadmin/backup/file1.txt  [1 of 2]
 9984 of 9984   100% in    0s    18.78 kB/s  done
backup/file2.txt -> s3://tecadmin/backup/file2.txt  [2 of 2]
 0 of 0     0% in    0s     0.00 B/s  done

Make sure you are not adding trailing slash in upload directory named backup (eg: backup/), else it will upload only content of backup directory only.

# s3cmd put -r backup/ s3://tecadmin/

backup/file1.txt -> s3://tecadmin/file1.txt  [1 of 2]
 9984 of 9984   100% in    0s    21.78 kB/s  done
backup/file2.txt -> s3://tecadmin/file2.txt  [2 of 2]
 0 of 0     0% in    0s     0.00 B/s  done
5. List Data of S3 Bucket

List the objects of s3 bucket using ls switch with s3cmd.

# s3cmd ls s3://tecadmin/

                       DIR   s3://tecadmin/backup/
2013-09-03 10:58    190216   s3://tecadmin/file.txt
6. Download Files from Bucket

Some times if we need to download files from s3 bucket, Use following commands to download it.

# s3cmd get s3://tecadmin/file.txt

s3://tecadmin/file.txt -> ./file.txt  [1 of 1]
 4 of 4   100% in    0s    10.84 B/s  done
7. Remove Data of S3 Bucket

To remove files are folder from s3 bucket use following commands.

 Removing file from s3 bucket 
# s3cmd del s3://tecadmin/file.txt

File s3://tecadmin/file.txt deleted

 Removing directory from s3 bucket 
# s3cmd del s3://tecadmin/backup

File s3://tecadmin/backup deleted
8. Remove S3 Bucket

If we don’t need s3 bucket any more, we can simply delete it using following command. Before removing bucket make sure its empty.

# s3cmd rb s3://tecadmin

ERROR: S3 error: 409 (BucketNotEmpty): The bucket you tried to delete is not empty

Above command failed because of s3 bucket was not empty

To remove bucket first remove all objects inside bucket and then use command again.

# s3cmd rb s3://tecadmin

Bucket 's3://tecadmin/' removed

Thanks for using this article. If you want to mount s3bucket in your system, you can article Mount S3bucket in Linux using s3fs. Also you can sync databetween s3 bucket and local directory using s3cmd.