Philip Hutchins

Head in the cloud...

owSSH Documentation

owSSH is a Ruby gem that wraps awscli and allows you to quickly and easily list all stacks, stack details and ssh to nodes within a stack in OpsWorks. It provides a executable that gives you a command line tool called owssh and also provides a library that returns usable objects containing stack information.



  • Ensure that you have the prerequisites installed
  • Install the owssh gem gem install owssh


  • Owssh defaults to using the aws config file below

    • ~/.aws/config.owssh
    • You can override this by setting the following AWS environment variable
    • Or if you do not want to use the same config that awscli is using, set the following
  • Have your SSH key in the correct location and with the correct name and permissions (the name of this key file will be moved to a config file in the future)

    • cp my_id_rsa ~/.ssh/id_rsa_owssh +chmod 600 ~/.ssh/id_rsa_owssh
    • You can override this by setting the following environment variable +OWSSH_SSH_KEY_FILE
  • Owssh will use the default aws profile unless you override it with the following environment variable


Command Line Usage

Version 0.0.21

owssh list                                                   - List all environments
owssh describe                                               - Show details of hosts in all stacks
owssh describe [Stack Name]                                  - Show details of a specific stack
owssh [Stack Name] [Hostname or Type]                        - SSH to a host in a stack
owssh [Stack Name] [Hostname or Type] "Your command here"  - SSH to a host in a stack and run a command

 Type      - The type of host. I.E. rails-app, resque, etc...
  Hostname  - The name of the host. I.E. rails-app1, resque1, etc...

Library Usage

HASH get_stacks                      - Returns a hash with key of the Stack Name and Value of the Stack ID
HASH get_instances                   - Returns a hash with key of Hostname and value of a hash containing the following...
                                        "PUB_IP"  => Instance Public IP
                                        "PRIV_IP" => Instance Private IP
                                        "TYPE"    => Type of Instance
NIL  print_instances(instances_hash) - Prints a list of instances
NIL  print_stacks(stacks_hash)       - Prints a list of stacks