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Table of contents
What is AWS Boto3?
Features of AWS Boto3
Installing AWS Boto3
Using AWS Boto3
Use Cases of AWS Boto3
Frequently Asked Questions
What is an SDK?
What are multi-part transfers?
What are AWS Lambda functions?
Last Updated: Mar 27, 2024

AWS Boto3

Author Abhinav Anand
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Ashwin Goyal
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You have come to the right place if you want to use AWS services like S3, EC2, ECS, etc., in your Python scripts or applications. 

aws boto3

This article will teach you about an open-source SDK, AWS Boto3, its features, and how to use it.

What is AWS Boto3?

AWS Boto3 is an open-source software development kit (SDK) for Python developers maintained and published by the Amazon Web Services team. It makes it easier for you to interact with different AWS services directly from your Python code. It is built on top of botocore, which is a low-level Python library that deals with sending API requests to AWS services.

Now let us take a look at the features of AWS Boto3.

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Features of AWS Boto3

The following are the core features of Boto3:-

  • Up-to-date interface: Boto3 uses JSON models to generate classes for describing AWS APIs that ensure timely updates and consistency among all platforms
  • Waiters: Using this feature, you can automatically poll for pre-defined status changes in your AWS resources. For example, you can start an EC2 instance and use a waiter to wait until it reaches the “running” state.
  • Service-specific features: Boto3 has many service-specific features, such as automatic multi-part transfers for S3, simplified query conditions for Amazon DynamoDB, and more
  • Python 2 and 3 support: Boto3 has native support for Python versions 2.7+ and 3.4+


Now that you know about AWS Boto3, let's learn how to install it.

Installing AWS Boto3

Before getting started, ensure you have the latest version of Python installed in your system.

The following are the steps for installing AWS Boto3:-

Step 1: Configure your Python environment using the following commands

python -m venv .venv
. .venv/bin/activate


The commands were successfully executed if you don’t see any error messages.

Step 2: Now, you can install Boto3 with the following command

python -m pip install boto3




If you see a similar output, you have successfully installed the AWS Boto3 SDK. Now, let us configure AWS Credentials and run some example Python code that uses Boto3.

Using AWS Boto3

To use this SDK, you first need to configure the AWS credentials that are needed for accessing your AWS services. For this, run the commands below to install the AWS CLI.

curl "" -o "AWSCLIV2.pkg"
sudo installer -pkg AWSCLIV2.pkg -target /


Now, run the following command in the terminal to set up a default profile that the AWS Copilot CLI will use to manage your application and services. Enter your access key ID and access key secret, which can be found in your AWS account security credentials, and also set the region as us-west-2, as it is enabled in your AWS account by default.


aws configure




Create a new Python notebook (file with ipynb extension) in the current directory and then paste the following code.

  • Python


import boto3
s3 = boto3.resource('s3')
for bucket in s3.buckets.all():


This code will print the names of all the AWS S3 buckets you have created in your AWS account.



Now, we will look at some use cases of AWS Boto3.

Use Cases of AWS Boto3

The following are some common use cases of AWS Boto3:-

  • Manage EC2 Instances: You can use Boto3 to create, start, stop, terminate, and other operations on Amazon EC2 instances.
  • Work with S3: Using Boto3, you can upload and download objects from your S3 buckets. You can also manage permissions directly from your Python code.
  • Automate Lambda Functions: Boto3 also supports managing AWS Lambda functions. This is especially useful for building serverless computing environments.
  • Configure AWS IAM: AWS Boto3 can be used for managing AWS Identity and Access Management resources. You can create users, groups, and roles directly from Python.
  • Monitoring AWS Services: With Boto3, you can retrieve and monitor usage metrics from AWS CloudWatch.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is an SDK?

A Software Development Kit (SDK) is a set of software tools, libraries, and documentation that makes it easier for developers to build applications for specific frameworks or platforms. It ensures you can focus on building applications instead of starting from scratch.

What are multi-part transfers?

A multi-part data transfer is a technique used for transferring large files by dividing them into smaller parts or chunks. These parts are transmitted individually and reassembled at the target location. It allows your transfers to be resumable.

What are AWS Lambda functions?

AWS Lambda functions are a serverless computing service that allows developers to run code without the need to manage servers. With AWS Lambda, you can execute code responding to specific events, such as changes to an Amazon S3 bucket data, updates to a DynamoDB table, etc.


In this article, you learned about AWS Boto3, which is a powerful software development tool for Python that is used for interacting with AWS services directly from your Python code.

You can go through the following articles to learn more about different AWS services:-

Happy Learning!

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