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Getting Started with the AWS Toolkit for Visual Studio

In this article, I will take you through the steps of downloading and installing the Amazon Web Services (AWS) toolkit for Microsoft Visual Studio. After installing the toolkit for AWS, I will show a sample operation of creating an AWS RDS instance using the AWS toolkit for Microsoft Visual Studio.

The AWS toolkit for Visual Studio can be found on http://aws.amazon.com/visualstudio/. Once you have navigated there, click the AWS Toolkit for Microsoft Visual Studio in order to download the toolkit.

Once downloaded, run this ‘AWSToolsAndSDKForNet_sdk-1.5.36.0-ps-1.1.16.0-tk-1.5.6.2.msi’ file.

The following window will appear:

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Click Next to go on to the next window. Read the license agreement and select “I agree”, then click Next. You will be directed to the custom setup window which should look like the following screenshot:

getting started AWS toolkit visual studio custom setup resized 600

 

Click Next and then click Install on the following window to install the toolkit. Once it has installed, click Finish

You have now installed the AWS Toolkit for Visual Studio. Now to use it, double click on your installation of Microsoft Visual Studio.

A window will appear, describing the various functions you can perform with the AWS toolkit for Visual Studio: 

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Click on the Get Started button. It will direct you to a new window which asks for your Access Key ID and Secret Access Key. If you do not have these credentials, you can obtain these from https://aws.amazon.com/security-credentials

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Once you enter the credentials, click Finish. You are now ready to use the various AWS products from this toolkit. The toolkit (reads AWS Explorer) is located on the left side of your visual studio window:

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Example Use of the toolkit:

Launching a database instance using Amazon RDS (Relational Database Service)

Amazon RDS is a web service that lets us set up, modify and use a scalable relational database in the cloud. We will discuss more about RDS in the upcoming posts like how to connect to a MySQL instance of RDS via MySQL client tools. Learn more about RDS at http://aws.amazon.com/rds/

Now, let’s see how we can launch an Amazon RDS database instance from the toolkit for Visual Studio. To start, right click on “Amazon RDS” on the toolkit and click “Launch DB Instance”.

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Next, select the database engine for our new instance on the next window. I will select MySQL as seen below:

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Click Next to configure this database engine instance. We now have to select database engine version along with instance class (e.g. small, medium, large etc.)

We will also have to select the storage size to be allocated. Give your instance a name (identifier), along with the username and password that you wish to use. Once this is done, click Finish to launch this database instance. The above steps are shown in the figure below:

getting started AWS toolkit visual studio engine class resized 600

So we have successfully installed and setup the AWS toolkit for Visual Studio and seen just one example out of the many awesome things that can be done using this toolkit.

In the upcoming posts, I will walk through how to install the AWS toolkit for Eclipse. After that we will explore how we can use AWS Simple Email Service (SES) to send emails from our JAVA/C# applications. I will also discuss how to access an RDS MySQL instance from a MySQL client and how to setup an EC2 instance from the AWS toolkits for Eclipse & Visual Studio.

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