You are previewing Programming Amazon Web Services.

Programming Amazon Web Services

Cover of Programming Amazon Web Services by James Murty Published by O'Reilly Media, Inc.
  1. Programming Amazon Web Services
    1. SPECIAL OFFER: Upgrade this ebook with O’Reilly
    2. A Note Regarding Supplemental Files
    3. Preface
      1. What’s in This Book?
      2. Ruby and Interactive Examples
      3. Conventions Used in This Book
      4. Using Code Examples
      5. Safari® Enabled
      6. How to Contact Us
      7. Acknowledgments
    4. 1. Infrastructure in the Cloud
      1. Amazon Web Services for Infrastructure
      2. Thinking Like Amazon
      3. Reality Check
      4. Interfaces: REST and Query Versus SOAP
    5. 2. Interacting with Amazon Web Services
      1. REST-Based APIs
      2. User Authentication
      3. Performing AWS Requests
    6. 3. S3: Simple Storage Service
      1. S3 Overview
      2. Interacting with S3
      3. Buckets
      4. Objects
      5. Alternative Hostnames
      6. Access Control Lists
      7. Server Access Logging (Beta)
      8. Signed URIs
      9. Distributing Objects with BitTorrent
    7. 4. S3 Applications
      1. Share Large Files
      2. Online Backup with AWS::S3
      3. S3 Filesystem with ElasticDrive
      4. Mediated Access to S3 with JetS3t
    8. 5. EC2: Elastic Compute Cloud (Beta)
      1. EC2 Overview
      2. Interacting with EC2
      3. Keypairs
      4. Network Security by IP
      5. Finding Amazon Machine Images
      6. Controlling Instances
      7. Log In to an Instance
      8. Security Groups
      9. Managing and Sharing AMIs
      10. Console Output and Instance Reboot
    9. 6. Using EC2 Instances and Images
      1. EC2 Instances in Detail
      2. Data Management in EC2
      3. Modifying an AMI
      4. Registering an AMI
      5. Create an AMI from Scratch
    10. 7. EC2 Applications
      1. Dynamic DNS
      2. On-Demand VPN Server with OpenVPN
      3. Web Photo Album with Gallery 2
    11. 8. SQS: Simple Queue Service
      1. SQS Overview
      2. Interacting with SQS
      3. Queues
      4. Messages
      5. Queue Attributes
      6. Queue Access Control
    12. 9. SQS Applications
      1. Messaging Simulator
      2. Distributed Application Services with BOTO
      3. Automated Management of EC2 Instance Pools with Lifeguard
    13. 10. FPS: Flexible Payments Service (Beta)
      1. FPS Overview
      2. Interacting with FPS
      3. Managing Your Tokens
      4. Acquiring Third-Party Tokens
      5. Pay Now Widgets
    14. 11. FPS Transactions and Accounts
      1. Performing FPS Transactions
      2. Account Management and Information
    15. 12. FPS Advanced Topics
      1. Gatekeeper Language Guide
      2. Micropayments with FPS
      3. Building a Marketplace Application
      4. Subscribing to FPS Event Notifications
    16. 13. SimpleDB (Beta)
      1. SimpleDB Overview
      2. Interacting with SimpleDB
      3. Domains
      4. Items and Attributes
      5. Representing Data in SimpleDB
      6. Performing Queries
      7. Stock Price Database: A Mini SimpleDB Application
    17. A. AWS Resources
      1. AWS Online Resources
      2. Client Tools
      3. API Libraries
      4. Third-Party AWS Solutions
    18. B. AWS API Error Codes
      1. S3: Simple Storage Service
      2. EC2: Elastic Compute Cloud
      3. SQS: Simple Queue Service
      4. FPS: Flexible Payments Service
      5. SimpleDB
    19. Index
    20. About the Author
    21. Colophon
    22. SPECIAL OFFER: Upgrade this ebook with O’Reilly

Chapter 2. Interacting with Amazon Web Services

In this chapter, we will show you how to create and send HTTP requests that will be understood by the Amazon Web Services (AWS) infrastructure. To demonstrate how to communicate with the AWS REST and Query interfaces, we will build a communications library in Ruby. In later chapters we will build client programs that work with the API interface for each AWS infrastructure service. These service clients will take advantage of the low-level communication library we present in this chapter.

To interact with AWS, our communications library must create HTTP request messages that describe the actions to perform, and it must provide the data the service will operate on. The library will send request messages to the designated service, wait for a response, determine whether the request was successful, and pass the response back to the client for further processing. Although the infrastructure services have very different capabilities and applications, at the HTTP communication level they work in much the same way and will reuse the same library functionality.


Amazon’s S3, EC2, SQS, FPS, and SimpleDB services are made available via two application programming interfaces (APIs) that are based on the standard features of the HTTP protocol: the REST and Query interfaces. Each service’s API defines the structure and content of the HTTP request messages the service will understand and the response messages it will return.

HTTP Requests ...

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