AWS Snowball Edge devices are owned by AWS, and they reside at your on-premises location while they're in use.
- Receive the device – UPS delivers the AWS Snowball Edge device. You will notice that it doesn't come in a box. The device is its own physically rugged shipping container. When the device first arrives, inspect it for damage or obvious tampering. If you notice anything that looks suspicious about the device, don't connect it to your internal network. Instead, contact Support and inform them of the issue so that a new device can be shipped to you.
- Position the hardware – Move the device into your data center and open it following the instructions on the case or in this document. Connect the device to power and your local network.
- Power on the device – Next, power on the device by pressing the power button above the LCD display. Wait a few minutes and the Ready screen appears.
- Get the IP address for the device – The LCD display has a CONNECTION tab on it. Tap this tab and get the IP address for the AWS Snowball Edge device.
- Get your manifest file and unlock code to unlock the Snowball.
The manifest file is used to authenticate your access to the device. The manifest is encrypted so that only the unlock code can decrypt it.
The unlock code is a 29-character code used to decrypt the manifest. To prevent unauthorized access to the device while it is at your facility, we recommend that you keep the unlock code in a safe location that is different from the location of the manifest file.
- Download the Snowball Edge Client and AWS CLI. These are the software tools you will use to manage the device and the flow of data between the device and your on-premises data storage location.
- Use the Snowball Edge client to unlock the device and prepare for data transfer.
- Use AWS CLI to transfer data between the device and your on-premises data storage location.
- Prepare the device for its return trip – After you're done with the device in your on-premises location, press the power button above the LCD display. It takes about 20 seconds for the device to power off. Unplug the device, place its power cables into the cable nook on top of the device and shut all three of the device's doors. The device is now ready to be returned.
- Arrange with UPS for return shipment of the device to AWS
Supported Network Hardware
To use the AWS Snowball Edge device, you need your own network cables. For RJ45 cables, there are no specific recommendations. SFP28 and QSFP28 cables and modules from Mellanox and Finisar have been verified to be compatible with the device.
After you open the back panel of the AWS Snowball Edge device, you see the network ports shown in the following photograph.
These ports support the following network hardware.
This port provides a 10G/25G SFP28 interface compatible with SFP28 and SFP+ transceiver modules and direct-attach copper (DAC) cables. You must provide your own transceivers or DAC cables.
- For 10G operation, you can use any SFP+ option. Examples include:
- 10Gbase-LR (single mode fiber) transceiver
- 10Gbase-SR (multi-mode fiber) transceiver
- SFP+ DAC cable
- For 25G operation, you can use any SFP28 option. Examples include:
- 25Gbase-LR (single mode fiber) transceiver
- 25Gbase-SR (multi-mode fiber) transceiver
- SFP28 DAC cable
This port provides a 40G QSFP28 interface on storage-optimized devices and a 40/50/100G QSFP28 interface on compute-optimized devices. Both are compatible with QSFP+ transceiver modules and DAC cables. You must provide your own transceivers or DAC cables. Examples include the following:
- 40Gbase-LR4 (single mode fiber) transceiver
- 40Gbase-SR4 (multi-mode fiber) transceiver
- QSFP28 DAC
This port provides 1Gbase-TX/10Gbase-TX operation. It is connected via UTP cable terminated with an RJ45 connector. Compute-optimized devices have two RJ45 ports.
1G operation is indicated by a blinking amber light. 1G operation is not recommended for large-scale data transfers to or from the Snowball Edge device, as it dramatically increases the time it takes to transfer data.
10G operation is indicated by a blinking green light. It requires a Cat6A UTP cable with a maximum operating distance of 180 feet (55 meters).
When you are ready to connect the device to your internal network, see the next section.
Connect to Your Local Network
Using the following procedure, you connect the AWS Snowball Edge device to your local network. The device doesn't need to be connected to the internet. The device has three doors, a front, a back, and a top.
To connect the device to your network
- Open the front and back doors, sliding them inside the device door slots. Doing this gives you access to the touch screen on the LCD display embedded in the front of the device, and the power and network ports in the back.
- Open the top door, remove the provided power cable from the cable nook, and plug the device into power.
- Choose one of your RJ45, SFP+, or QSFP+ network cables, and plug the device into your network. The network ports are on the back of the device.
- Power on the AWS Snowball Edge device by pressing the power button above the LCD display.
- When the device is ready, the LCD display shows a short video while the device is getting ready to start. After about 10 minutes, the device is ready to be unlocked.
- (Optional) Change the default network settings through the LCD display by choosing CONNECTION.
If needed, you can change the device’s IP address to a different static address, which you provide by using the following procedure.
To change the IP address of an AWS Snowball Edge device
- On the LCD display, choose CONNECTION.
A screen appears that shows you the current network settings for the AWS Snowball Edge device. The IP address below the drop-down box is automatically updated to reflect the DHCP address that the AWS Snowball Edge device requested.
- (Optional) Change the IP address to a static IP address. You can also keep it as is.
The device is now connected to your network.
To prevent corrupting your data, don't disconnect the AWS Snowball Edge device or change its connection settings while it's in use.
Working with the SnowballEdge client and AWS CLI
- Download and install the SnowballEdge client on a powerful workstation where Python 2.7+ is installed.
- Download and install AWS CLI on the workstation. AWS CLI version 1.16.14 is supported with Snowball Edge devices. Please download and install that version using the steps given in
3. Run the below command, on the workstation, after installing AWS CLI and SnowballEdge client.
The command returns prompts to enter information about the device and job. Replace the following values in the example prompts:
Snowball Edge Manifest Path: Enter the path to the manifest file, including the manifest file name.
Unlock Code: Enter the unlock code.
Default Endpoint: Enter the IP address of the Snowball Edge device.
4. Run the unlock-device command to unlock the Snowball Edge device as follows:
5. Confirm that the device is "UNLOCKED" by running the below command.
6. Now you need to get s3 credentials (an access key and a secret access key) for AWS CLI. Run the following command.
The above command will provide the access key which you need to use in the below command in place of "EXAMPLEACCESSKEYID":-
snowballEdge get-secret-access-key --access-key-id EXAMPLEACCESSKEYID
The command returns both the access key and the secret access key. Save these keys which will be used in the next command. Run the following command.
aws configure --profile snowballEdge
The command returns prompts to enter the credentials for the Snowball Edge profile. Replace the following values in the example prompts:
AWS Access Key ID [None]: Enter the access key ID from above
AWS Secret Access Key [None]: Enter the secret access key from above
Default region name [None]: Leave blank and press Enter.
Default output format [None]: Leave blank and press Enter.
The above command creates a profile named snowballEdge for the device. This profile name will be used in later commands.
7. Now you are ready to transfer the data between the Snowball Edge and your local network.
In the example commands below,
replace http://192.0.2.0:8080 with the actual IP address of the Snowball device, preceded by http:// and followed by :8080
replace bucket or bucket/path/example with the actual bucket name or path to the files on your Snowball device (note that paths to locations on the Snowball always start with s3://)
replace local-destination/path/example or local-source/path/example with the actual local path which files are being transferred to or from
You can use the aws s3 ls command to list contents of the Snowball Edge or to list the contents of a specific path on the Snowball Edge.
aws s3 ls --recursive s3://bucket/ --endpoint http://192.0.2.0:8080 --profile snowballEdge
aws s3 ls --recursive s3://bucket/path/example --endpoint http://192.0.2.0:8080 --profile snowballEdge
To transfer directories or multiple files, from the Snowball to your network, run the aws s3 cp command with the --recursive option. Example:
aws s3 cp --recursive s3://source-bucket/path/example local-destination/path/example
--endpoint http://192.0.2.0:8080 --profile snowballEdge
To transfer directories or multiple files, from your network to the Snowball, run the aws s3 cp command with the --recursive option. Example:
aws s3 cp --recursive local-source/path/example s3://destination-bucket/path/example
--endpoint http://192.0.2.0:8080 --profile snowballEdge
As a best practice, be sure to validate the data during and after the transfer. For more information, see https://docs.aws.amazon.com/snowball/latest/developer-guide/validation.html
Online Documentation for working with the SnowballEdge client and AWS CLI is available from AWS.
Powering Off the Snowball Edge
When you've finished transferring data to or from the AWS Snowball Edge device, prepare it for its return trip to AWS. Before you continue, make sure that all data transfer to the device has stopped.
When all communication with the device has ended, simply turn it off by pressing the power button above the LCD display. It takes about 20 seconds for the device to shut down.
Disconnecting the Snowball Edge
Disconnect the AWS Snowball Edge device cables. Secure the device's power cable into the cable nook beneath the top door on the device. Pull out and close the front and back doors. When they close completely, you hear an audible click. When the return shipping label appears on the E Ink display on top of the device, it's ready to be returned.
Returning the Snowball Edge Device
After the device has been powered off, the prepaid UPS shipping label on the E Ink display contains the correct address to return the AWS Snowball Edge device. This is the address of an AWS sorting facility.
You must arrange with UPS for return shipment of the Snowball Edge device.
Use the shipping label that is displayed on the E Ink display.
Never affix a separate shipping label to the device, unless that shipping label is provided by AWS.