On the Amazon Web Services blog today Jeremy Lindblom shares a quick way you can use the AWS SDK to create an EC2 instance directly from PHP in just a few lines of code.
Amazon EC2 is a powerful AWS service that includes the ability to provision on-demand servers. While you can easily do this through the AWS Management Console, in this post, I want show you how to use the AWS SDK for PHP to do it programmatically by interacting with the Amazon EC2 API.
He starts with an outline of the steps (requiring a little bit of EC2-side configuration first) and shows how to use the SDK. His code sets up the client, creates the key pair and security group then is ready to make the instance. You can give the "runInstances" method a configuration that includes number of instances and what type. There's also some hooks back into the request that can tell you when the instances are running and how to get the path to the new instance (for ssh access).