AWS CLI: AWS CLI version 2. Tips and tricks. Part 1. Wizard

John Gakhokidze
3 min readApr 22, 2021

AWS on re:Invent 2020 announced many new features and enhancements to AWS CLI. In this post I will try to describe some Wizard features which boosts productivity:

Let us quickly remind ourselves about command structure:

Every command starts with (guess what ) — aws, followed by service, then operation and then by parameters.

However, not all of us are AWS CLI gurus, and re-reading documentation every time to add all necessary parameters significantly slows down the process. Here is a useful feature: AWS CLI wizard command.

In the example below I will create a new DynamoDB table

  • aws dynamodb wizard returns a warning that I need to specify a subcommand:
  • How can we figure out what subcommand to use? Imagine that I don’t know that the command is new-table, and I type create-table instead:
  • As you can see it does not work, but AWS CLI returns a tip: valid choices are new-table
  • Typing aws dynamodb wizard new-table, bring us to GUI:
  • Look at that! It gives you all the necessary parameters to fill and asks for a Yes/No on optional parameters:
  • Navigation is simple: Use Arrow keys, TAB, and SHIFT+TAB
  • There are more Easter eggs though — Preview menu
  • You can preview output as AWS CLI command or AWS CloudFormation YAML template.

The wizard feature is fantastic.

Please note:

  1. Not all services support wizard (for example Lightsail)- you will figure it out from the output

Note: DynamoDB option returns error with wizard available, while Lightsail does not.

In summary. The Wizard feature boosts productivity for beginners and gurus alike.

Stay tuned for Part 2!