Sometimes you need to delete an EC2 instance but dont want to go into the AWS web console. Most of the time you will have the internal DNS hostname of the instance which would looks something like: ip-10-151-21-159.ec2.internal.

The AWS CLI doesnt let you terminate a node by a hostname. It requires the instance ID. So the first task is to find the instance ID and then terminate it

You can find the instance ID by describing an instance and filtering on the private-dns-name:

aws ec2 describe-instances --filters "Name=private-dns-name,Values=ip-10-151-21-159.ec2.internal"

This will give you a big JSON output. Look for this key: InstanceId.

If you have jq installed, you can do this to rip it right out of the json:

aws ec2 describe-instances --filters "Name=private-dns-name,Values=ip-10-151-21-159.ec2.internal" | jq -r .Reservations[0].Instances[0].InstanceId

To terminate the instance, you simply run:

aws ec2 terminate-instances --instance-ids i-07a8839d40f993baa

Replacing it with your instance ID.

Contact me if you have any questions about this or want to chat, happy to start a dialog or help out: {::nomarkdown}

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