100 Days of AWS — Day 1 — IAM User

Prashant Lakhera
3 min readApr 5, 2022

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Welcome to Day 1 of 100 Days of AWS.

What is IAM?

Identity and Access Management(IAM) is used to manage AWS

  • Users
  • Groups
  • Roles
  • Api Keys
  • IAM Access Policies

and it provide method for secure access/access-permissions to AWS resources(such as EC2,S3, etc)

Now go to the IAM console https://us-east-1.console.aws.amazon.com/iamv2/home?region=us-east-1#/home

If we notice at the right hand side at the top of console it says Global i.e creating a user/groups/roles will apply to all regions

To create a new user,Just click on Users on the left navbar and then click on Add users

and then add all the details

By default any new IAM account created with NO access to any AWS services(non-explicit deny)

Always follow the best practice and for daily work try to use a account with least privilege(i.e non root user)

IAM Policies: A policy is a document that formally states one or more permissions.For eg: IAM provides some pre-built policy templates to assign to users and groups

  • Administrator access: Full access to AWS resources
  • Power user access: Admin access except it doesn’t allow user/group management
  • Read only access: As name suggest user can only view AWS resources

Default policy is explicitly deny which will override any explicitly allow policy

Let take a look at these policies


"Version": "2012-10-17",
"Statement": [
"Effect": "Allow",
"Action": "*",
"Resource": "*"

We can create our own custom policy using policy generator or written from scratch

So Custom Policy where everything denies for EC2 resources

  • More than one policy can be attached to a user or group at the same time
  • Policy cannot be directly attached to AWS resources(eg: EC2 instance)
  • There is a really nice tool https://policysim.aws.amazon.com which we can use to test and troubleshoot IAM and resource based policies

Skip tagging and Review all the setting and click on Create user

Now we understand how to create the user manually, let automate the process

  • Using Shell Script
  • Python Boto3
  • Terraform



Prashant Lakhera

AWS Community Builder, Ex-Redhat, Author, Blogger, YouTuber, RHCA, RHCDS, RHCE, Docker Certified,4XAWS, CCNA, MCP, Certified Jenkins, Terraform Certified, 1XGCP