Installing Liferay Enterprise Search Security

The very first thing you must do to secure Elasticsearch is enable X-Pack Security. After that you can begin configuring authentication and Transport Layer Security.

Enabling X-Pack Security

To enable security, add this setting in elasticsearch.yml:

xpack.security.enabled: true

Now you can set up X-Pack users.

Setting Up X-Pack Users

In a system using X-Pack Security and X-Pack Monitoring, these built-in X-Pack users are important:

  • kibana
  • elastic

Set the passwords for all X-Pack’s built-in users. The setup-passwords command is the simplest method to set the built-in users’ first-use passwords for the first time. To update a password subsequently, use Kibana’s UI or the Change Password API.

The interactive argument sets the passwords for all built-in users. The configuration shown in these articles assumes you set all passwords to liferay. Of course, that’s not recommended for production systems.

./bin/elasticsearch-setup-passwords interactive

Elastic’s setup-passwords command documentation describes additional options.

Since you’re securing Elasticsearch, remember the elastic user’s password.

Enable transport layer security on each node.

Enabling Transport Layer Security

The following instructions for enabling TLS use liferay as the password whenever one is needed. Use your own passwords for your installation.

Generate Node Certificates

Generate a node certificate for each node. Alternatively, use a Certificate Authority to obtain node certificates.

  1. Create a certificate authority, using X-Pack’s certutil command:

    ./bin/elasticsearch-certutil ca --pem --ca-dn CN=localhost
    

    This generates a ZIP file. Unzip the contents somewhere safe.

  2. Generate X.509 certificates and private keys using the CA from Step 1:

    ./bin/elasticsearch-certutil cert --pem --ca-cert /path/to/ca.crt --ca-key /path/to/ca.key --dns localhost --ip 127.0.0.1 --name localhost
    

    This generates another ZIP file. Extract the contents somewhere in the [Elasticsearch Home]/config folder.

Enable TLS for Elasticsearch 7

Enable TLS on each node via its elasticsearch.yml.

  1. Enable transport layer TLS with these settings in elasticsearch.yml for inter-node communication:

    xpack.security.transport.ssl.enabled: true
    
  2. Add the certificate, key and certificate authority paths to each node’s elasticsearch.yml:

    xpack.security.transport.ssl.certificate: /path/to/[Elasticsearch Home]/config/localhost.key
    xpack.security.transport.ssl.certificate_authorities: ["/path/to/ca.crt"]
    xpack.security.transport.ssl.key: /path/to/[Elasticsearch Home]/config/localhost.crt
    xpack.security.transport.ssl.verification_mode: certificate
    

    The example paths above assume you added the certificate to Elasticsearch Home/config/.

  3. Enable TLS on the HTTP layer to encrypt client communication:

    xpack.security.http.ssl.enabled: true
    
  4. Configure the certificate, key, and certificate authority paths to each node’s elasticsearch.yml:

    xpack.security.http.ssl.certificate_authorities: ["/path/to/ca.crt"]
    xpack.security.http.ssl.certificate: /path/to/[Elasticsearch Home]/config/localhost.crt
    xpack.security.http.ssl.key: /path/to/[Elasticsearch Home]/config/localhost.key
    xpack.security.http.ssl.verification_mode: certificate
    

Elasticsearch 6 TLS

The settings on Elasticsearch 6 were slightly different than those presented above for Elasticsearch 7. Enable TLS on each node via its elasticsearch.yml.

  1. Add the certificate, key and certificate authority paths to each node’s elasticsearch.yml:

    xpack.ssl.certificate: /path/to/[Elasticsearch Home]/config/localhost.crt
    xpack.ssl.certificate_authorities: ["/path/to/ca.crt"]
    xpack.ssl.key: /path/to/[Elasticsearch Home]/config/localhost.key
    xpack.ssl.verification_mode: certificate 
    

    The example paths above assume you added the certificate to Elasticsearch Home/config/.

  2. Enable transport layer TLS with these settings in elasticsearch.yml:

    xpack.security.transport.ssl.enabled: true
    
  3. Enable TLS on the HTTP layer to encrypt client communication:

    xpack.security.http.ssl.enabled: true
    

After X-Pack is installed and TLS is enabled, configure the X-Pack Security adapter in Liferay DXP.

Example Elasticsearch Security Configuration

For ease of copying and pasting, here is the complete Elasticsearch configuration (elasticsearch.yml) used in this guide (with the Elasticsearch 6 example commented out):

# For Elasticsearch 7.3/7.4
cluster.name: LiferayElasticsearchCluster

# X-Pack Security
xpack.security.enabled: true

## TLS/SSL settings for Transport layer
xpack.security.transport.ssl.enabled: true
xpack.security.transport.ssl.verification_mode: certificate 
xpack.security.transport.ssl.key: /path/to/[Elastisearch_Home]/config/localhost.key
xpack.security.transport.ssl.certificate: /path/to/[Elastisearch_Home]/config/localhost.crt
xpack.security.transport.ssl.certificate_authorities : ["/path/to/ca.crt"]

# TLS/SSL settings for HTTP layer
xpack.security.http.ssl.enabled: true
xpack.security.http.ssl.verification_mode: certificate 
xpack.security.http.ssl.key: /path/to/[Elastisearch_Home]/config/localhost.key
xpack.security.http.ssl.certificate: /path/to/[Elastisearch_Home]/config/localhost.crt
xpack.security.http.ssl.certificate_authorities : ["/path/to/ca.crt"]

# Comment out when Kibana and Liferay's X-Pack Monitoring are also configured
#xpack.monitoring.collection.enabled: true

# For Elasticsearch 6.5/6.8
#cluster.name: LiferayElasticsearchCluster
#
# X-Pack Security
#xpack.security.enabled: true
#
# Enable TLS/SSL
#xpack.security.transport.ssl.enabled: true # To enable Transport level SSL for internode-communication
#xpack.security.http.ssl.enabled: true # To enable HTTP level SSL required by Kibana
#
## General TLS/SSL settings for both Transport and HTTP levels
#xpack.ssl.verification_mode: certificate 
#xpack.ssl.key: /path/to/[Elastisearch_Home]/config/localhost.key
#xpack.ssl.certificate: /path/to/[Elastisearch_Home]/config/localhost.crt
#xpack.ssl.certificate_authorities : ["/path/to/ca.crt"]
#
# Comment out when Kibana and Liferay's X-Pack Monitoring are also configured
#xpack.monitoring.collection.enabled: true

For both Elasticsearch 6 and Elasticsearch 7, the Liferay Connector settings are the same.

Install and Configure the Liferay Connector to X-Pack Security

If you have a Liferay Enterprise Search Premium subscription, download the Liferay Connector to X-Pack Security [Elastic Stack 6.x]. Install the LPKG file by copying it into the Liferay Home/deploy folder.

To configure the X-Pack adapter, navigate to Control PanelConfigurationSystem Settings. Find the Search category and click on the X-Pack Security entry. You can enter the property values here, but it’s more common to use a configuration file deployed to [Liferay Home]/osgi/configs. For the X-Pack security connector, create a file called

com.liferay.portal.search.elasticsearch7.configuration.XPackSecurityConfiguration.config

The exact contents of the file depend on your X-Pack setup. To configure the adapter according to the Elasticsearch setup documented here, populate the file like this:

sslKeyPath="/path/to/localhost.key"
sslCertificatePath="/path/to/localhost.crt"
certificateFormat="PEM"
requiresAuthentication="true"
username="elastic"
password="liferay"
sslCertificateAuthoritiesPaths="/path/to/ca.crt"
transportSSLVerificationMode="certificate"
transportSSLEnabled="true"

The password should match what you set during the X-Pack password setup above.

The certificate and key files referenced here are the same ones used on the Elasticsearch server. Copy them to the Liferay DXP server and update their paths in the configuration accordingly.

Enable authentication by setting requiresAuthentication to true and providing the credentials for the Elasticsearch user. For TLS, enable transport TLS, set the certificate verification mode and certificate format, and provide the path to the certificate, key, and certificate authority. Of course, the exact values depend on your X-Pack configuration.

Here’s the complete list of configuration options for the X-Pack Connector:

  • sslKeyPath
  • sslCertificatePath
  • sslCertificateAuthoritiesPaths
  • certificateFormat
  • requiresAuthentication
  • username
  • password
  • transportSSLVerificationMode
  • transportSSLEnabled
  • sslKeystorePath
  • sslKeystorePassword
  • sslTruststorePath
  • sslTruststorePassword

When you’re finished configuring X-Pack Security, restart Elasticsearch. These steps require a full cluster restart.

Disabling Elasticsearch Deprecation Logging

Some Elasticsearch APIs used by Liferay’s Elasticsearch 6 connector were deprecated as of Elasticsearch 6.6 and 6.7. This can result WARN log entries in Elasticsearch’s deprecation log when Liferay DXP is configured with Elasticsearch 6.8.x and X-Pack Security is enabled:

2019-07-16T14:47:05,779][WARN ][o.e.d.c.j.Joda           ] [
ode_name]'y' year should be replaced with 'u'. Use 'y' for year-of-era. Prefix your date format with '8' to use the new specifier.
[2019-07-16T14:47:06,007][WARN ][o.e.d.c.s.Settings       ] [
ode_name][xpack.ssl.certificate] setting was deprecated in Elasticsearch and will be removed in a future release! See the breaking changes documentation for the next major version.
[2019-07-16T14:47:06,007][WARN ][o.e.d.c.s.Settings       ] [
ode_name][xpack.ssl.certificate_authorities] setting was deprecated in Elasticsearch and will be removed in a future release! See the breaking changes documentation for the next major version.
[2019-07-16T14:47:06,008][WARN ][o.e.d.c.s.Settings       ] [
ode_name][xpack.ssl.key] setting was deprecated in Elasticsearch and will be removed in a future release! See the breaking changes documentation for the next major version.
[2019-07-16T14:47:06,463][WARN ][o.e.d.x.c.s.SSLService   ] [
ode_name]SSL configuration [xpack.http.ssl] relies upon fallback to another configuration for [key configuration, trust configuration], which is deprecated.
[2019-07-16T14:47:06,464][WARN ][o.e.d.x.c.s.SSLService   ] [
ode_name]SSL configuration [xpack.security.transport.ssl.] relies upon fallback to another configuration for [key configuration, trust configuration], which is deprecated.

These warnings do not signal any functional issues, and can be disabled (see here to learn how).

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