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Amazon S3 - Upload with Custom Metadata

Amazon S3 allows you to store data on S3 Bucket. Each S3 file keep some system specific as well as user specific information in term of Metadata. So you can upload your file with required metadata as well as you can add some more details with the S3 Object.  You can upload S3 Objects on Amazon S3 with Custom Metadata in two ways:

a) Using Amazon S3 API-    If you are a programmer, you can write your own program to use S3 REST API- PUT Object. You can read more on AWS website to learn details about using SOAP APIs.
b) Using Bucket Explorer User Interface-  You can upload files with Custom Metadata on S3 with mouse clicks using Bucket Explorer, and also set Metadata there.

Upload File with Custom Metadata using S3 REST API

With this method, you can upload file with Custom Metadata by using PUT Object REST APIs and passing x-amz-meta prefix in the Request header for key and add the desired value. Any key start with this prefix is considered as custom (user) metadata. These metadata details returns when you request to retrieve the object.

To authenticate the request, you must have WRITE permissions on the Bucket.


PUT /  ObjectName   HTTP/1.1
Host:  BucketName
Date:  date  
x-amz-meta-keyHeader : valueHeader
Authorization:  signatureValue  


Upload files on Amazon S3 with custom header using Bucket Explorer


Bucket Explorer allows you to upload file(s) at Amazon S3 with Custom Header. Every uploading file has its own system Metadata and using this feature, you can customize Metadata detail for the uploading file and folder. You can even Set/Edit the system Metadata for the file .

  1. Run Bucket Explorer.
  2. Select a Bucket in which you want to upload file .
  3. Select file(s) that you want to upload with custom header from left panel tree and right click on selected file(s).
  4. Select option “Upload with Custom Headers” .
  5. A dialog box entitled “Upload with custom header” appears. Click on “Add” button. It will ask for Key and value.
  6. Enter data for key and value. Key name does not contain any space and other constraints that are followed by Metadata.
  7. Click on OK button.
  8. Uploading process will start in queue and after completion of queue, you can see statistics panel for the status of upload process .
  9. The file(s) are then uploaded.
  10. Refresh object listing so that you can see the uploaded file(s).
  11. Right click on the uploaded file and choose " Properties " option.
  1. You will find the Metadata added in the properties of the file.
  2. Only files within folder will show Metadata in their properties and not the folder even if you have uploaded the folder with custom header.
  3. If you upload the same file with different custom header, you will be asked to Overwrite or Skip the file.
  4. After completing the upload process, new Metadata will not be saved with the identical file’s properties.
  5. Now change the content of the file at local file system and upload it again with the new Metadata. Now you can see the changed Metadata (Custom header) in the properties window of the file.