Matt Andrews
Software engineer making apps – that aren’t apps – and more at the FT. 会说汉语.

Uploading static files & websites to Amazon S3 efficiently with s3up

I’ve been using Amazon S3 at work and at home a lot recently and have grown to really like its features. Versioning, lifecycle rules and event streams can be used in really cool ways to make rock solid and super performant websites.

When it comes to actually uploading files to S3 there are plenty of choices for command line tools but they all seemed to a bit more than I wanted or not quite enough and I’m learning Go at the moment so…

Introducing s3up!

A new cross platform command line tool for uploading files to S3.

If you’d like to try it out or report bugs, installation instructions and more information is up on GitHub.


  • Optimised for uploading static websites
  • Uploads multiple files concurrently (or can be set to upload one at a time — this can be controlled via the --concurrency option)
  • Only uploads files that are new or have changed
  • Automatically detects and sets an appropriate Content-Type for each file uploaded
  • Allows for easy configuration of ACLs and Cache-Control headers for files
  • Splits large files up and uploads them in smaller pieces
  • Written in Go and compiled for all platforms, which means it is fast, can be installed quickly, and is standalone — it does not rely on other dependencies (like Python or Node)
  • Allows manipulation of the path that files get uploaded to
  • Has a --dry-run so that the changes it will make to objects in S3 can be previewed

Manipulating upload path

When deploying a static website to S3 it’s useful to be able to upload files from a different local directory than the one you’re working in or to a directory other than the root in the S3 bucket.

With s3up, files can be uploaded into subdirectories via the --prefix option and leading components to be stripped off file names (for example a generated index.html in a dist folder can be uploaded to the root of an S3 bucket like this: s3up --strip 1 dist/index.html --bucket s3up-test)

I hope you like it and find it useful. Please report bugs if you find them.