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Create an Amazon Lightsail Server in 5 Minutes

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Creating the Lightsail VPS Instance

Step 1 – Open a new browser tab, and then go to the Amazon AWS website. If you don’t already have one, create an Amazon account. Log in to your Amazon AWS account.

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Step 2 – Look for the “Compute” section near the top of the AWS Services page. Click the “Lightsail” link. This brings you to the main Lightsail page.

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Step 3 – Click the “Create Instance” button to go to the “Create an instance” page.

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Step 4 – Review the default instance location shown on the “Create an instance” page. This will be the location of the data center that will host your Lightsail VPS. In most cases, you should select the instance location closest to your target audience or the one closest to most of your users. Either accept the default location presented to you or change it by clicking “Change AWS Region and Availability Zone.”

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Step 5 – Select the datacenter location city you would like to use for your Lightsail VPS.

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Step 6 – Select the platform or blueprint you would like to use when setting up your Lightsail VPS. You can select popular apps such as WordPress or LAMP, or opt to create your instance with only an operating system. For the purposes of this tutorial, I am going to select an “OS Only” option and install Ubuntu 16.04 LTS on my new Lightsail server.

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Step 7 – Now, it’s time to use the SSH key pair we created earlier with PuTTY. In the “Optional” section, click the “Change SSH key pair” link (Note: If this is the first time using this option, the link may read “Add SSH key pair.”)

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Step 8 – Click the “Upload Now” link when it appears. After the “SSH key pair region” pop-up appears, click the “Upload” button.

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Step 9 – Click “Choose File,” and then navigate to the folder where you stored the keys you created with PuTTY. Select the filename of the public key you created, and then click “Open.” Click the “Upload key” button when prompted.

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Step 10 – Select the instance plan you want to use. Amazon Lightsail offers several different configurations based on the amount of compute resources you require. For the purposes of this tutorial, though, we’re going to stick with the $3.50-per-month instance plan. As you can see from the image, the first month is free if you choose this particular instance plan.

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Step 11 – Type in a unique name for your new Lightsail VPS (or just accept the default offered by Amazon.) Click the “Create” button, and then just wait a few seconds. After a short wait (about a minute I guess,) the name your new instance will appear.

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Basic Configuration

Step 1 – Click the “three-dots” icon to the right of the instance name. After the drop-down list appears, select “Manage.” A new page appears with detailed information about the new instance you just created.

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Step 2 – Click the “Networking” tab. IP and firewall information for your new VPS is displayed on the page.

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Step 3 – Click the “Create Static IP” button. On the “Create a static IP address” page, enter a unique name in the “Name your static IP” field or just accept the default recommended by Amazon.

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Step 4 – Click the “Create” button. After a second or two, a new public static IP address for your Lightsail VPS will display on a new page. Note – By default, the new static IP should attach to the selected VPS instance automatically. However, if it doesn’t, just click the name of your new instance in the “Attach to an instance” section to complete the process.

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Step 5 – Click the “Home” link at the top of the page. On the Lightsail home page, you can now see the public IP address displayed under the name of your new Lightsail VPS.

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The only thing left to do is to connect to the new Lightsail VPS Instance with PuTTY. To continue reading, go to the next page.

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