Befriending Dragons

Intersectional Coaching Journeys: Reframe, Unblock, Move Forward

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AzureCopy to the Rescue for an S3 to Azure Blob Copy!

This week I helped a client move files from AWS S3 to Azure Storage blobs. Sounds simple, right? Here’s the tricky part… While there are both Azure and AWS cmdlets for PowerShell, they don’t cooperate. Neither has a cmdlet that accepts credentials from the other and neither accepts arbitrary URLs from outside their own cloud. And AzCopy also doesn’t accept S3 URLs. None of the S3 tools seem to recognize Azure. So what’s a girl to do?

The Search and The Discovery

After hours of trying to get creative with PowerShell or AzCopy I resorted to Bing searches. When what to my wondering eyes should appear, but a miniature sleigh…. uh, a fully fledged, well-written tool to move data between Azure and S3. But there’s more! This tool, known as Rudolph… I mean AzureCopy, can move data between Azure, S3, OneDrive, SharePoint online, Dropbox, and local file systems! Ken Faulkner has written a wonderful, holly jolly tool! After a few hiccups as I learned how to use the tool and learned about how S3 URLs are (and at first mostly are not) formed I quickly had all my data moved from S3 to Azure! Simple. Easy. It flew like the down of a thistle (whatever that means). So, what was required after installing the tool?

Open a dos-prompt and go to the directory where you installed AzureCopy. Instead of using a config file I set the values at the command line (use your own real values for the directory and after each equal sign):

cd C:installsazurecopy
set AzureAccountKey=MyAzureStorageAccountKey
set AWSAccessKeyID=MyS3AccessId
set AWSSecretAccessKeyID=MyS3SecretKey
set AWSRegion value=us-west-2

Then I got a listing of my files on S3 – this took longer than it should because I had trouble getting the S3 URL correct. That was a problem with my newness to S3, not a problem with the tool. If you’re in the default region you use Otherwise you use See Amazon’s docs on S3 buckets for more details on the URL.

Also, I didn’t need all the keys passed in on both commands, it was just easier to write and copy the code that way as I tried to get it all working.

azurecopy -list -azurekey %AzureAccountKey% -s3k %AWSAccessKeyID% -s3sk %AWSSecretAccessKeyID%

Next I listed out the files in Azure. At this point the container was empty but the command at least verified my access worked. I uploaded a small test file and verified I could see it with AzureCopy, then deleted the test file.

azurecopy -list  -azurekey %AzureAccountKey% -s3k %AWSAccessKeyID% -s3sk %AWSSecretAccessKeyID%

And now on to the secret sauce – the actual, magical file copy.

azurecopy -i -o -azurekey %AzureAccountKey% -s3k %AWSAccessKeyID% -s3sk %AWSSecretAccessKeyID% -blobcopy -destblobtype block


And just like that, within a couple of minutes, the list command for azurecopy showed all the files in Azure! I double-checked with my Azure and AWS PowerShell cmdlets that yes, this was really true! This tool saved me SO MUCH TIME! And now you know, the built in tools from the major cloud vendors lock you into their own cloud. But with AzureCopy you too can free your data!

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PowerShell works for Amazon AWS S3 too!

More and more we have to work with data in many different locations. This week I got to work with S3 files that were moving to Azure blob storage. I was surprised to find that Amazon has published AWS cmdlets for PowerShell. It took me a little while to figure out the format and terminology so I’ll try to explain that and compare/contrast how we interact with storage in AWS and Azure. Today we will cover viewing the files.

Configure PowerShell

Well first, let’s get things set up. Install the Azure and AWS cmdlets for PowerShell. These examples will pass keys for everything so there’s no need to configure PowerShell with certificates to access the clouds.

The first time (depending on your PowerShell version) you use PowerShell after installing AWS cmdlets you may need to run these cmdlets:

Add-Type -Path “C:Program Files (x86)AWS SDK for .NETbinNet45AWSSDK.dll”
Import-Module “C:Program Files (x86)AWS ToolsPowerShellAWSPowerShellAWSPowerShell.psd1”

Connecting to Storage


We’ll start with AWS S3. Each connection to S3 storage requires an AWS region (unless you use the default “US Standard”, an access id (unique identifier), a secret key, and a bucket. You are storing data within a specific region on an access point in a managed grouping called a bucket. The access id in S3 is equivalent to a storage account name in Azure. A bucket in S3 is roughly equivalent to a container in Azure.

$S3Bucket = “MyBucket”
$AWSregion = “us-west-2”

Next let’s use those values to make a new client connection to S3. You define a configuration object that points to the full URL for the region. Then you pass that configuration object, the access id, and the secret key to a function that creates a client connection to S3. This sets the context for the entire session and the context does not have to be passed to the individual commands. Note that the URL changes depending on the region, for example

Set-DefaultAWSRegion $AWSregion # auto-stored to $StoredAWSRegion
$config=New-Object Amazon.S3.AmazonS3Config
$config.ServiceURL = $AWSserviceURL
$S3Client=[Amazon.AWSClientFactory]::CreateAmazonS3Client($secretKeyID, $secretAccessKeyID, $config)


Let’s compare that to how we list files in Azure blob storage. First you specify the location and credentials. The region is implied because the storage account name is unique across all regions. The container and secret key value are similar in meaning.

$storageAccountName = “MyStorageAccountName”
$storageaccountkey = “SecretKeyValue”
$containerName = “MyBucket”

Then you define the storage context which is the location and credentials of an object. Alternatively you could set the default storage context for the session or for a particular profile’s connection to a given subscription.

$AzureContext = New-AzureStorageContext -StorageAccountName $storageAccountName -StorageAccountKey $storageAccountkey

View the Files


Now you can get basic metadata about the S3 bucket:
Get-S3Bucket $S3Bucket
Get-S3BucketLocation $S3Bucket

Next let’s list the files in that bucket.

Get-S3Object -BucketName $S3Bucket

You can populate an array with the list, in this example I passed in just the name (key) of each file:
$S3FileList = (Get-S3Object -BucketName $S3Bucket).key

And you can filter the result set:
$S3FileList = (Get-S3Object -BucketName $S3Bucket | Where-Object {$_.lastmodified -lt “2/17/2015”}).Key
$S3FileList = (Get-S3Object -BucketName $S3Bucket | Where-Object {$_.key -like “*42*”}).Key


For Azure we can do similar operations to view the files. This example lists all files in the container:

Get-AzureStorageBlob -Context $AzureContext -Container $containerName

You can also populate an array with the list:

$AzureList = Get-AzureStorageBlob -Context $AzureContext -Container $containerName

Or pull out just a single property:

(Get-AzureStorageBlob -Context $AzureContext -Container $containerName).Name

Or list just blobs that match a wildcard value:

Get-AzureStorageBlob -Context $AzureContext -Container $containerName -Blob *42*

My Work Here is Done

This intro to PowerShell for S3 opens up the door to many possibilities – data migrations, multi-cloud hybrid solutions, and whatever your imagination can conjure up! Today we reviewed how to view files, I’ll cover more in future posts. Happy PowerShelling!


When you open “Microsoft Azure PowerShell” type ISE in the window to launch the interactive PowerShell shell. It has intellisense, multiple script windows, and a cmdlet viewer.