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AWS Shell vs AWS CLI: What are the differences?

Developers describe AWS Shell as "An integrated shell for working with the AWS CLI (by AWS)". The AWS Command Line Interface is a unified tool to manage your AWS services. On the other hand, AWS CLI is detailed as "* Universal Command Line Interface for Amazon Web Services*". It is a unified tool to manage your AWS services. With just one tool to download and configure, you can control multiple AWS services from the command line and automate them through scripts.

AWS Shell and AWS CLI can be categorized as "AWS" tools.

Some of the features offered by AWS Shell are:

  • Auto Completion of Commands and Options
  • Shorthand Auto Completion
  • Server Side Auto Completion

On the other hand, AWS CLI provides the following key features:

  • File Commands for Amazon S3
  • Control multiple AWS services
  • URI-based Parameter Input

AWS Shell and AWS CLI are both open source tools. It seems that AWS CLI with 9.02K GitHub stars and 2.01K forks on GitHub has more adoption than AWS Shell with 5.29K GitHub stars and 482 GitHub forks.

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What is AWS CLI?

It is a unified tool to manage your AWS services. With just one tool to download and configure, you can control multiple AWS services from the command line and automate them through scripts.

What is AWS Shell?

The AWS Command Line Interface is a unified tool to manage your AWS services.

Need advice about which tool to choose?Ask the StackShare community!

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Blog Posts

May 21 2020 at 12:02AM

Rancher Labs

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What are some alternatives to AWS CLI and AWS Shell?
PowerShell
A command-line shell and scripting language built on .NET. Helps system administrators and power-users rapidly automate tasks that manage operating systems (Linux, macOS, and Windows) and processes.
Terraform
With Terraform, you describe your complete infrastructure as code, even as it spans multiple service providers. Your servers may come from AWS, your DNS may come from CloudFlare, and your database may come from Heroku. Terraform will build all these resources across all these providers in parallel.
Putty
It is an SSH and telnet client, developed originally by Simon Tatham for the Windows platform. It is open source software that is available with source code and is developed and supported by a group of volunteers.
AWS Amplify
A JavaScript library for frontend and mobile developers building cloud-enabled applications. The library is a declarative interface across different categories of operations in order to make common tasks easier to add into your application. The default implementation works with Amazon Web Services (AWS) resources but is designed to be open and pluggable for usage with other cloud services that wish to provide an implementation or custom backends.
LocalStack
LocalStack provides an easy-to-use test/mocking framework for developing Cloud applications.
See all alternatives