This process will create an Amazon EC2 Linux Server.

  1. Go to the EC2 Dashboard and click Launch Instance button
  2. Select Free Tier checkbox and select the first AMI (Amazon Linux AMI (HVM), SSD Volume Type)ec2-management-console
  3. Select t2.micro. The default values for the Instance Details, Storage, Tags, and Security Groups is sufficient. click the Review and Launch button.
  4. Next you need to create a key pair. This is the key you will use to connect to the server either through SSH terminal connection or a SCP file transfer connection using WinSCP or Filezilla.key pair.jpeg
  5. download your key pair to your laptop and keep it secure and safe, maybe back it up to an online service like drop box

Amazon uses key pairs to connect to your server instead of passwords. Since the user will always connect with a key no actual user administrator password is needed. The neat thing about keys pairs they can be used on multiple to EC2 instances. feel free to select use an existing key pair if you already created one.

When you return to the EC2 instance dashboard you will see your instance complete initialization.


On your windows laptop install Putty a free SSH terminal client from

To connect to EC2 on Putty you will need to convert your key to PPK format (using WinSCP, tools, Run PuTTYgen, Select Conversions, Import Key, .pem file, and select save private key) then on Putty connection select the host name found on the EC2 instance dashboard and select SSH connection type. On the connection from under Category on the left, scroll down to Connection / SSH / Auth and then select browse to select your PPK private key file.

When you correctly connect to the EC2 instance with Putty you will see a Login As prompt in your terminal window. you can login as ec2-user. (just type ec2-user and hit enter.)

In the next post I detail the use of Elastic IPs for the EC2 server.

In a later post I will detail the steps to setup LAMP, Apache2.4, virtual hosts, Coldfusion, and node.js on a linux EC2 server.