AWS CLI vs. AWS Cloud9: Choosing the Right Development Environment

AWS CLI vs. AWS Cloud9: Amazon Web Services (AWS) offers developers a choice between the AWS Command-Line Interface (CLI) and AWS Cloud9 as development environments to interact with and manage AWS resources. In this article, we will compare AWS CLI and AWS Cloud9, providing a comprehensive comparison table, exploring their features, use cases, best practices, frequently asked questions, and sharing external resources to help you make an informed decision when selecting the right development environment for your AWS projects.

Understanding AWS CLI and AWS Cloud9

Before we dive into the comparison, let’s clarify what AWS CLI and AWS Cloud9 are:

  • AWS CLI: The AWS Command-Line Interface is a set of open-source tools that allow you to interact with AWS services using commands in your terminal. It provides powerful and flexible control over your AWS resources and services.
  • AWS Cloud9: AWS Cloud9 is a cloud-based integrated development environment (IDE) that allows you to write, run, and debug code directly in your web browser. It includes a code editor, debugger, and a terminal for running commands.


Comparison Table: AWS CLI vs. AWS Cloud9

To help you understand the differences between AWS CLI and AWS Cloud9, we’ll provide a comparison table that highlights their key attributes:

Parameter AWS CLI AWS Cloud9
Accessibility Requires installation on your local machine. Accessible directly from a web browser.
Platform Compatibility Works on Windows, macOS, and Linux. Works on any platform with a modern web browser.
Setup and Configuration Requires installation and credential configuration. Minimal setup with AWS credentials; no installation required.
Usage Flexibility Offers command-line control and scripting capabilities. Provides a full-featured cloud-based integrated development environment.
Storage and Data Transfer Uses local storage for scripts and data. Cloud-based storage and data transfer within the IDE.
Integration with AWS Services Integrates with AWS services through the command line. Offers seamless integration with AWS services, code repositories, and more.
Resource Management Requires explicit AWS configuration and credentials management. Seamlessly manages AWS resources with built-in tools.
Cost Management Users must manage and monitor costs manually. Simplifies cost management with an environment isolated from your local machine.
Collaboration Primarily designed for individual use. Supports real-time collaboration with team members within the IDE.

Key Features


  1. Local Installation: AWS CLI can be installed locally, allowing you to work offline and utilize custom scripts.
  2. Powerful Scripting: Ideal for creating and automating complex scripts for AWS resource management.
  3. Integration: Supports integration with third-party tools and local applications.
  4. Resource Management: Requires explicit AWS configuration and credentials management.

AWS Cloud9:

  1. Cloud-Based IDE: Provides a cloud-based integrated development environment accessible from a web browser.
  2. Collaboration: Supports real-time collaboration with team members, allowing multiple developers to work on the same project.
  3. Built-In AWS Tools: Offers built-in tools for managing AWS resources, code repositories, and more.
  4. Storage and Data Transfer: Utilizes cloud-based storage for scripts and data, reducing local storage requirements.

Use Cases


  1. Advanced scripting and automation.
  2. Resource management on local machines.
  3. Custom integration with local tools and applications.

AWS Cloud9:

  1. Collaborative development projects.
  2. Web-based coding and debugging.
  3. Integrated cloud-based development environment.


Best Practices


  1. Keep credentials secure and rotate them regularly.
  2. Implement a proper IAM policy for the AWS CLI user.
  3. Utilize AWS CLI profiles for multiple AWS accounts.

AWS Cloud9:

  1. Leverage built-in AWS tools for resource management.
  2. Use cloud-based storage for code and data.
  3. Enable collaboration features for team projects.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1: Can I use AWS CLI and AWS Cloud9 simultaneously?

Yes, you can use both AWS CLI and AWS Cloud9 based on your specific needs. They can complement each other for different scenarios.

Q2: Are there any additional costs associated with AWS Cloud9?

While AWS Cloud9 is available at no extra cost, standard AWS service charges may apply for the use of AWS resources and storage.

Q3: How does AWS CLI handle collaboration?

AWS CLI primarily focuses on individual use and scripting, and it does not provide built-in collaboration features.

Q4: Can AWS Cloud9 be used for production-level development?

AWS Cloud9 is suitable for production-level development projects, particularly when collaboration and cloud-based development tools are essential.

Q5: What kind of coding environments does AWS Cloud9 support?

AWS Cloud9 supports a variety of coding languages and environments, making it versatile for different programming needs.

Q6: Does AWS Cloud9 offer code version control and integration with code repositories?

Yes, AWS Cloud9 integrates with popular code repositories like AWS CodeCommit, GitHub, and Bitbucket, providing version control and collaboration features.

External Resources

For further exploration, here are some external links to in-depth resources on AWS CLI and AWS Cloud9:

In conclusion, the choice between AWS CLI and AWS Cloud9 depends on your specific development requirements and preferences. AWS CLI provides extensive flexibility and control for individual developers, while AWS Cloud9 offers a collaborative, cloud-based IDE for team projects. Consider your use cases and follow best practices to make an informed decision. Explore external resources to further enhance your understanding of AWS CLI and AWS Cloud9.

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