Terraform, AWS - aws Instance Profile already exists error

June 29, 2017


“aws Instance Profile already exists error”

$ terraform --version  
Terraform v0.9.8  


This is a know issue with terraform, see:


, read:

brikis98 commented on 4 Nov 2015

Update: it turns out that instance profiles don’t show up in the AWS console. Well, they do, but only attached to a role. If you delete the role, but not the policy, then there is no longer a way to see the policy in the console.

Therefore, instead of using the console, you can use the AWS CLI to see all the instance profiles:

aws iam list-instance-profiles

With that command, I found the old, conflicting profiles, so the terraform error message was correct.

Instructions for Ubuntu:

  • Install aws-cli

  • $ sudo apt install python-pip

  • $ pip install awscli

  • Update pip

  • $ pip install –upgrade pip

  • Configure aws-cli

  • $ aws configure

  • Delete the instance profile

  • $ aws iam delete-instance-profile –instance-profile-name <instance_profile_name>