Changing the owner of a heroku app with S3 assets

24 February 2014

I recently had to migrate a Heroku app that was under my personal accounts, Heroku and s3, to another user. But this app also had assets under Amazon Web Services Simple Storage Service which made the process more complicated. You can use something like bucket explorer to manage S3 with a gui. I’ll show you how to do it with aws-cli. I’m assuming you installed it and you’re familiar with the commandline in general.

Since we are using more than one aws account we should use a config file to store both sets of credentials. See AWS configuring environment. Place your personal credentials under default and make another set for the recipient.


  [profile client001]

Remember to clear your env variables if you were using them before. aws-cli defaults to using the env variables if present, even if you pass the --profile argument.

Now you should be able to do aws s3 ls and get your file listing. And aws s3 ls --profile client001 and get the client’s files. If you are dealing with a small amount of data < 1TB we can simply copy the files to our local machine and then copy them back to the new bucket. For larger amounts I have no clue :(

  aws s3 cp s3://mybucket/ . --recursive

Note aws-cli cp command doesn’t support matching by * so you have to use the --recursive flag. You can test what will happen if you run the command, with the --dryrun flag.

You can copy the files to the new bucket like so.

  aws s3 cp . s3://new-bucket --profile client001 --recursive

Note you may have to specifiy --region some-region for some reason specifying the region in my config file didn’t work.

You have to set the heroku env variables to the new aws credentials using the heroku toolbelt

heroku config:set AWS_ACCESS_KEY_ID=new_blah
heroku config:set AWS_SECRET_ACCESS_KEY=new_blah
heroku config:set AWS_S3_BUCKET=new_blah

and just transfer it using heroku’s system.

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