Purpose

The intent of this document is to provide a canonical source of prescriptive instruction sets for common administrator and user tasks using Apache NiFi. It is intended to complement the NiFi Overview, NiFi System Administrator’s Guide, and NiFi User’s Guide. Those documents provide extensive reference information about various features and configuration values, but they do not provide information on how to accomplish tasks.

This document is not intended to be a comprehensive repository of all possible admin or user activities, but rather a collection of well-documented reference activities which can be followed directly or adapted to custom scenarios. This document requires continued updates as application or ecosystem behavior changes, and corrections and improvements where the content is unclear to the community. To contribute to this document, please open a Jira (see further instructions in the Contributor Guide) and submit a pull request (PR).

This document is provided with no warranty. All steps have been evaluated for correctness to the extent possible by the Apache NiFi community, but no responsibility is assumed for negative impacts on any computer system where these commands are executed.

Installing Apache NiFi

Apache NiFi is an easy to use, powerful, and reliable system to process and distribute data. It supports powerful and scalable directed graphs of data routing, transformation, and system mediation logic. In addition to NiFi, there is the NiFi Toolkit, a collection of command-line tools which help perform administrative tasks such as interacting with remote services, generating TLS certificates, managing nodes in a cluster, and encrypting sensitive configuration values.

Description

Instructions on downloading the Apache NiFi application and Toolkit

Purpose

To make the application available to run on the specified machine (e.g. a local development environment)

Starting Point

Machine running modern OS

Expected Outcome

Latest version of Apache NiFi available to run on host with no configuration

Estimated Duration

1 minute + download time

The following instructions are for installing a single node of NiFi. This guide assumes macOS 10.11.0+ but should work for any modern operating system. *nix commands are used by default, but Windows equivalents are provided where available.
  1. Go to the Apache NiFi Downloads page.

  2. Download the latest version of NiFi via the compressed binary files. For example, if the latest version is 1.11.4:

    • nifi-1.11.4-bin.tar.gz [1.2 GB]

    • nifi-toolkit-1.11.4-bin.tar.gz [42 MB]

  3. If you are directed to a mirror page, click the first link on the page to download the respective archive file.

    Download site
  4. Note that the nifi-1.11.4-bin.tar.gz and the nifi-toolkit-1.11.4-bin.tar.gz compressed files are downloaded to your Downloads folder.

  5. Download the GPG signature and checksums for those files. They are found on the initial download page next to each binary file.

    • gpg --verify -v nifi-1.11.4-bin.tar.gz.asc — Verifies the GPG signature provided on the binary by the Release Manager (RM). See NiFi GPG Guide: Verifying a Release Signature for further details

    • shasum -a 256 nifi-1.11.4-bin.tar.gz — Calculates a SHA-256 checksum over the downloaded artifact. This should be compared with the contents of nifi-1.11.4-bin.tar.gz.sha256 for equality

    • shasum -a 512 nifi-1.11.4-bin.tar.gz — Calculates a SHA-512 checksum over the downloaded artifact. This should be compared with the contents of nifi-1.11.4-bin.tar.gz.sha512 for equality

  6. Extract the files from each tar.gz file. This can be done by double-clicking on the files in the Finder or running the following commands in the terminal.

    • tar -xvzf nifi-1.11.4-bin.tar.gz — Uncompresses the gzip file and extracts the tar archive contents to nifi-1.11.4/

    • tar -xvzf nifi-toolkit-1.11.4-bin.tar.gz — Uncompresses the gzip file and extracts the tar archive contents to nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/

  7. Optionally, move the folders to a more appropriate location.

Building NiFi From Source

Description

Instructions on downloading the Apache NiFi source code and building the application locally

Purpose

To make the application (with potential code modifications) available to run on the specified machine (e.g. a local development environment)

Starting Point

Machine running modern OS

Expected Outcome

Latest version of Apache NiFi available to run on host with no configuration

Estimated Duration

10 - 35 minutes + download time

This guide assumes macOS 10.11.0+ but should work for any modern operating system. *nix commands are used by default, but Windows equivalents are provided where available.
  1. Go to the Apache NiFi Downloads page.

  2. Download the latest version of NiFi source code via the compressed files. For example, if the latest version is 1.11.4:

    • nifi-1.11.4-source-release.zip [53 MB]

  3. If you are directed to a mirror page, click the first link on the page to download the respective archive file.

  4. Note that the nifi-1.11.4-source-release.zip compressed file is downloaded to your Downloads folder.

  5. Download the GPG signature and checksums for the file. They are found on the initial download page next to the archive file.

    • gpg --verify -v nifi-1.11.4-source-release.zip.asc — Verifies the GPG signature provided on the archive by the Release Manager (RM). See NiFi GPG Guide: Verifying a Release Signature for further details

    • shasum -a 256 nifi-1.11.4-source-release.zip — Calculates a SHA-256 checksum over the downloaded artifact. This should be compared with the contents of nifi-1.11.4-source-release.zip.sha256 for equality

    • shasum -a 512 nifi-1.11.4-source-release.zip — Calculates a SHA-512 checksum over the downloaded artifact. This should be compared with the contents of nifi-1.11.4-source-release.zip.sha512 for equality

  6. Extract the files from the zip file. This can be done by double-clicking on the file in the Finder or running the following command in the terminal.

    • unzip nifi-1.11.4-source-release.zip — Uncompresses the zip file and extracts the archive contents to nifi-1.11.4/

  7. Optionally, move the folder to a more appropriate location.

    nifi-1.11.4/ % ls -alGh
    total 328
    drwxr-xr-x  25 alopresto  staff   800B Apr  6 15:48 ./
    drwxr-xr-x   8 alopresto  staff   256B Apr  4 18:01 ../
    drwxr-xr-x   4 alopresto  staff   128B Jan 22 15:10 .github/
    -rw-r--r--   1 alopresto  staff   254B Jan 22 15:10 DEPENDENCIES
    -rw-r--r--   1 alopresto  staff    66K Jan 22 15:10 KEYS
    -rw-r--r--   1 alopresto  staff    21K Jan 22 15:10 LICENSE
    -rw-r--r--   1 alopresto  staff   7.1K Jan 22 15:10 NOTICE
    -rw-r--r--   1 alopresto  staff   9.1K Jan 22 15:10 README.md
    -rw-r--r--   1 alopresto  staff   3.3K Jan 22 15:10 SECURITY.md
    drwxr-xr-x   5 alopresto  staff   160B Apr  6 15:44 nifi-api/
    drwxr-xr-x   8 alopresto  staff   256B Apr  6 15:50 nifi-assembly/
    drwxr-xr-x   5 alopresto  staff   160B Apr  6 15:45 nifi-bootstrap/
    drwxr-xr-x  23 alopresto  staff   736B Apr  6 15:44 nifi-commons/
    drwxr-xr-x   9 alopresto  staff   288B Apr  6 15:44 nifi-docker/
    drwxr-xr-x   7 alopresto  staff   224B Apr  6 15:44 nifi-docs/
    drwxr-xr-x   8 alopresto  staff   256B Apr  6 15:44 nifi-external/
    drwxr-xr-x   5 alopresto  staff   160B Apr  6 15:44 nifi-framework-api/
    drwxr-xr-x   6 alopresto  staff   192B Apr  6 15:44 nifi-maven-archetypes/
    drwxr-xr-x   5 alopresto  staff   160B Apr  6 15:45 nifi-mock/
    drwxr-xr-x  82 alopresto  staff   2.6K Apr  6 15:44 nifi-nar-bundles/
    drwxr-xr-x   7 alopresto  staff   224B Apr  6 15:44 nifi-system-tests/
    drwxr-xr-x  14 alopresto  staff   448B Apr  6 15:44 nifi-toolkit/
    -rw-r--r--   1 alopresto  staff    44K Jan 22 15:10 pom.xml
  8. Build the NiFi source using Apache Maven from the source root directory (nifi-1.11.4/) using one of the following commands. For more information, see the NiFi Contributor Guide. Estimated build times for each command on a modern professional laptop are listed below; allow additional time for dependency library downloads on first build.

    • mvn clean install -Pinclude-grpc — Builds the application (expected time ~30 minutes)

    • mvn clean install -T2.0C — Builds the application with multiple parallel threads (expected time ~15 minutes)

    • mvn clean install -T2.0C -DskipTests — Builds the application with multiple parallel threads and unit tests disabled (expected time ~6 minutes)

      nifi-1.11.4/ % mvn clean install -T2.0C -DskipTests
      ...
      ------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Reactor Summary for nifi 1.11.4:
      
      nifi ............................................... SUCCESS [  0.834 s]
      nifi-api ........................................... SUCCESS [  8.799 s]
      nifi-framework-api ................................. SUCCESS [ 12.020 s]
      nifi-commons ....................................... SUCCESS [  0.253 s]
      nifi-utils ......................................... SUCCESS [ 16.029 s]
      nifi-properties .................................... SUCCESS [  6.863 s]
      nifi-security-utils ................................ SUCCESS [ 14.682 s]
      nifi-nar-bundles ................................... SUCCESS [  0.279 s]
      nifi-framework-bundle .............................. SUCCESS [  0.358 s]
      nifi-framework ..................................... SUCCESS [  1.538 s]
      nifi-properties-loader ............................. SUCCESS [ 14.153 s]
      ...
      nifi-system-test-suite ............................. SUCCESS [  3.999 s]
      ------------------------------------------------------------------------
      BUILD SUCCESS
      ------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Total time:  06:17 min (Wall Clock)
      Finished at: 2020-04-06T15:50:35-07:00
      ------------------------------------------------------------------------
  9. The resulting application is available in the build directory (for 1.11.14: nifi-assembly/target/nifi-1.11.4-bin/nifi-1.11.4).

    • cd nifi-assembly/target/nifi-1.11.4-bin/nifi-1.11.4 — Changes directory to the application root directory

      nifi-1.11.4/nifi-assembly/target/nifi-1.11.4-bin/nifi-1.11.4/ % ls -alGh
      drwxr-xr-x   10 alopresto  staff   320B Apr  6 15:50 ./
      drwxr-xr-x    3 alopresto  staff    96B Apr  6 15:50 ../
      -rw-r--r--    1 alopresto  staff   157K Jan 22 07:10 LICENSE
      -rw-r--r--    1 alopresto  staff    85K Jan 22 07:10 NOTICE
      -rw-r--r--    1 alopresto  staff   4.7K Jan 22 07:10 README
      drwxr-xr-x    8 alopresto  staff   256B Apr  6 15:50 bin/
      drwxr-xr-x   10 alopresto  staff   320B Apr  6 15:50 conf/
      drwxr-xr-x    3 alopresto  staff    96B Apr  6 15:50 docs/
      drwxr-xr-x    2 alopresto  staff    64B Jan 22 07:10 extensions/
      drwxr-xr-x  116 alopresto  staff   3.6K Apr  6 15:50 lib/

Starting NiFi

Description

Instructions on running the Apache NiFi application

Purpose

To configure and run the application on the local machine

Starting Point

Installing Apache NiFi or Building NiFi from Source

Expected Outcome

Latest version of Apache NiFi running on host with minimal configuration

Estimated Duration

1 minute

  1. Start in the directory where NiFi was downloaded and unarchived or built. For this section, the directory /etc/nifi-1.11.4 will be used. This directory will be referred to as the "NiFi home directory" and can be set explicitly (this is not done automatically by NiFi nor is it required).

    • export NIFI_HOME="/etc/nifi-1.11.4/" — Sets an environment variable ($NIFI_HOME) which references the installation directory (optional)

    • cd /etc/nifi-1.11.4 — Changes the terminal to the NiFi home directory

    • ls -alGh — Lists the contents of the directory (optional)

      NiFi Home directory contents
  2. At this point, NiFi can be started with default configuration values (available at http://localhost:8080/nifi).

    • ./bin/nifi.sh start — Starts NiFi. (It takes some time for NiFi to finish scheduling all components. Issuing bin/nifi.sh start executes the nifi.sh script that starts NiFi in the background and then exits. If you want nifi.sh to wait for NiFi to finish scheduling all components before exiting, use the --wait-for-init flag with an optional timeout specified in seconds: bin/nifi.sh start --wait-for-init 120. If the timeout is not provided, the default timeout of 15 minutes will be used.)

    • tail -f logs/nifi-app.log — Tails the application log which will indicate when the application has started

      NiFi application log listing available URLS
  3. Navigate to the URL in a web browser (http://localhost:8080/nifi or any listed in the nifi-app.log output).

    NiFi application running in browser

Modification of Configuration Values

Many web applications run on :8080 by default, so this port may already be occupied on the machine. This section will demonstrate changing the port used by NiFi. All of the following commands are run from $NIFI_HOME.

  1. Ensure the application is not running.

    • ps -ef | grep nifi — Checks the running system for any processes referencing nifi (optional)

    • ./bin/nifi.sh status — Determines if the specified instance is running (optional)

    • ./bin/nifi.sh stop — Stops the specified instance

  2. Open the main configuration file for NiFi (nifi.properties). Any text editor is sufficient for this (Sublime Text, Atom, vi, nano, etc.)

    • $EDITOR conf/nifi.properties — Opens the nifi.properties file for editing

  3. Change nifi.web.http.port=8080nifi.web.http.port=7777 — Sets the HTTP port to a new value

    Setting a port between 1 - 1024 requires root access on *nix systems
  4. Save and close the file.

  5. Start NiFi again

    • ./bin/nifi.sh start — Starts NiFi

    • tail -f logs/nifi-app.log — Tails the application log

  6. Open a web browser to the new address (http://localhost:7777/nifi)

Securing NiFi with TLS

Apache NiFi requires Transport Layer Security (TLS) configuration for multiple reasons.

  1. To encrypt communication between clients and server (this provides confidentialty and integrity over transmitted data)

  2. To prevent malicious users from intercepting data or impersonating the server

  3. To enable any authentication & authorization mechanisms

NiFi intentionally does not allow any authentication or authorization features over plaintext HTTP. Without the confidentiality and integrity provided by TLS and the user & group access controls, any malicious entity can intercept and modify NiFi API requests, corrupt and steal data, and otherwise interfere with the NiFi instance. Because of NiFi’s robust feature set, this can even lead to complete control over the host running NiFi. For more information, see Administrator’s Guide: Security Configuration.

Securing NiFi with TLS Toolkit

This section assumes no enterprise IT department to provide signed certificates. For a scenario with provided certificates, see Securing NiFi with Provided Certificates.

Description

Instructions on enabling Transport Layer Security (TLS) for the Apache NiFi application using the TLS Toolkit

Purpose

Securing NiFi with TLS protects data in motion and is required to enable authentication & authorization

Starting Point

Starting NiFi

Expected Outcome

Latest version of Apache NiFi running on host over TLS with client certificate authentication and authorization enabled and a single configured user

Estimated Duration

10 minutes

Apache NiFi provides a toolkit (a collection of command-line tools for system administration). One of these is the TLS Toolkit, which provides a self-signed Certificate Authority (CA) and can easily issue and sign certificates in the format expected by NiFi. The toolkit can be run by a user or scripted to perform automated certificate generation. For more information, see NiFi Toolkit Guide: TLS Toolkit.

The end result will consist of a self-signed NiFi CA (the root), a keystore and truststore containing the necessary certificates for the NiFi instance to operate, and a client certificate for a human user to access NiFi.

NiFi TLS Toolkit Standalone Certificate Diagram
  1. Start in the directory where the NiFi toolkit was downloaded and unarchived. For this section, the directory /etc/nifi-toolkit-1.11.4 will be used. This directory will be referred to as the "NiFi Toolkit home directory" and can be set explicitly (this is not done automatically by NiFi Toolkit nor is it required).

    • export NIFI_TOOLKIT_HOME="/etc/nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/" — Sets an environment variable ($NIFI_TOOLKIT_HOME) which references the installation directory (optional)

    • cd /etc/nifi-toolkit-1.11.4 — Changes the terminal to the NiFi Toolkit home directory

    • ls -alGh — Lists the contents of the directory (optional)

      NiFi Toolkit Home directory contents
  2. Generate the certificate and key for the NiFi instance. Running this command will first generate the NiFi CA root certificate and private key, then generate and sign the certificate for the application instance, and finally generate a pre-configured nifi.properties file.

    • ./bin/tls-toolkit.sh standalone -n "localhost" — Generates the signed certificate for localhost

      nifi-toolkit-1.11.4 % ./bin/tls-toolkit.sh standalone -n "localhost"
      2020/04/04 19:13:29 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandaloneCommandLine: No nifiPropertiesFile specified, using embedded one.
      2020/04/04 19:13:29 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Running standalone certificate generation with output directory ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4
      2020/04/04 19:13:30 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Generated new CA certificate ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/nifi-cert.pem and key ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/nifi-key.key
      2020/04/04 19:13:30 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Writing new ssl configuration to ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/localhost
      2020/04/04 19:13:30 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Successfully generated TLS configuration for localhost 1 in ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/localhost
      2020/04/04 19:13:30 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: No clientCertDn specified, not generating any client certificates.
      2020/04/04 19:13:30 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: tls-toolkit standalone completed successfully
  3. The toolkit has created three files in the localhost directory: keystore.jks, truststore.jks, and nifi.properties. To see what was automatically populated in nifi.properties, compare it to the default file in the NiFi instance.

    • diff /etc/nifi-1.11.4/conf/nifi.properties localhost/nifi.properties — Compares the original configuration with the newly-generated one

      nifi-toolkit-1.11.4 % diff ../nifi-1.11.4/conf/nifi.properties localhost/nifi.properties
      135,137c135,137
      < nifi.remote.input.host=
      < nifi.remote.input.secure=false
      < nifi.remote.input.socket.port=
      ---
      > nifi.remote.input.host=localhost
      > nifi.remote.input.secure=true
      > nifi.remote.input.socket.port=10443
      145c145
      < nifi.web.http.port=8080
      ---
      > nifi.web.http.port=
      147,148c147,148
      < nifi.web.https.host=
      < nifi.web.https.port=
      ---
      > nifi.web.https.host=localhost
      > nifi.web.https.port=9443
      163,169c163,169
      < nifi.security.keystore=
      < nifi.security.keystoreType=
      < nifi.security.keystorePasswd=
      < nifi.security.keyPasswd=
      < nifi.security.truststore=
      < nifi.security.truststoreType=
      < nifi.security.truststorePasswd=
      ---
      > nifi.security.keystore=./conf/keystore.jks
      > nifi.security.keystoreType=jks
      > nifi.security.keystorePasswd=aCeVndQ8JxIi9kLoz9YS65RClHPxB516tmIA/n26b54
      > nifi.security.keyPasswd=aCeVndQ8JxIi9kLoz9YS65RClHPxB516tmIA/n26b54
      > nifi.security.truststore=./conf/truststore.jks
      > nifi.security.truststoreType=jks
      > nifi.security.truststorePasswd=hbuVighksEPIxl6iGl1WFCIrFqdb65KZuamj72J7Yp8
      213c213
      < nifi.cluster.protocol.is.secure=false
      ---
      > nifi.cluster.protocol.is.secure=true
      217,218c217,218
      < nifi.cluster.node.address=
      < nifi.cluster.node.protocol.port=
      ---
      > nifi.cluster.node.address=localhost
      > nifi.cluster.node.protocol.port=11443

      The nifi.remote section configures Site to Site connections. The nifi.web section disables the plaintext HTTP connector and enables an HTTPS connector at localhost:9443 (the default HTTPS port for NiFi). The nifi.security section populates the paths to the keystore and truststore and randomly-generated passwords for each. The nifi.cluster section configures the cluster communication protocol (not used in a standalone instance).

  4. Copy the contents of the localhost directory to the conf/ directory in the location of the NiFi installation. This command will overwrite any existing nifi.properties file or keystore/truststore present in the destination.

    • cp -rv ./localhost/* /etc/nifi-1.11.4/conf/. — Copies the generated files into the NiFi instance

  5. Generate the user’s client certificate to authenticate to NiFi. The toolkit will create the certificate and sign it with the same NiFi CA certificate used for the NiFi server certificate. Because the NiFi truststore includes this public certificate, it will trust the client certificate and allow it to authenticate.

    • ./bin/tls-toolkit.sh standalone -C "CN=my_username, OU=NiFi" — Generates and signs the client certificate

      nifi-toolkit-1.11.4 % ./bin/tls-toolkit.sh standalone -C "CN=my_username, OU=NiFi"
      2020/04/04 19:38:30 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandaloneCommandLine: No nifiPropertiesFile specified, using embedded one.
      2020/04/04 19:38:30 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Running standalone certificate generation with output directory ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4
      2020/04/04 19:38:30 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.util.TlsHelper: Verifying the certificate signature for CN=localhost,OU=NIFI
      2020/04/04 19:38:30 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.util.TlsHelper: Attempting to verify certificate CN=localhost,OU=NIFI signature with CN=localhost,OU=NIFI
      2020/04/04 19:38:30 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.util.TlsHelper: Certificate was signed by CN=localhost,OU=NIFI
      2020/04/04 19:38:30 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Using existing CA certificate ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/nifi-cert.pem and key ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/nifi-key.key
      2020/04/04 19:38:30 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: No hostnames specified, not generating any host certificates or configuration.
      2020/04/04 19:38:30 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Generating new client certificate ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/CN=my_username_OU=NiFi.p12
      2020/04/04 19:38:31 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Successfully generated client certificate ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/CN=my_username_OU=NiFi.p12
      2020/04/04 19:38:31 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: tls-toolkit standalone completed successfully
  1. Load the client certificate into the web browser. Some browsers (e.g. Mozilla Firefox) maintain their own internal keychain separate from the operating system’s (OS). Others (e.g. Apple Safari, Google Chrome) rely on the OS keychain. On most modern OS, double-clicking the PKCS12 keystore (CN=my_username_OU=NiFi.p12) will open it with the default handler and load it into the OS keychain. The randomly-generated password is available in CN=my_username_OU=NiFi.password.

  2. Populate the Initial Admin Identity in NiFi. This is the identity that will be allowed to access the NiFi instance and configure user and group access via the UI or API.

    • $EDITOR /etc/nifi-1.11.4/conf/authorizers.xml — Opens the authorizers.xml file in the text editor.

    • Replace <property name="Initial User Identity 1"></property> in the userGroupProvider section with <property name="Initial User Identity 1">CN=my_username, OU=NiFi</property> containing the full Distinguished Name (DN) as provided to the TLS Toolkit in the previous step

    • Replace <property name="Initial Admin Identity"></property> in the accessPolicyProvider section with <property name="Initial Admin Identity">CN=my_username, OU=NiFi</property> containing the full Distinguished Name (DN) as provided to the TLS Toolkit in the previous step

      This is a frequent problem area when configuring security for NiFi. The DN must match exactly to be authenticated. Check capitalization and whitespace especially.
  3. Start NiFi with the new configuration.

    • cd /etc/nifi-1.11.4/ — Changes to the NiFi home directory

    • ./bin/nifi.sh start — Starts NiFi

    • tail -f logs/nifi-app.log — Tails the application log

      Note that there are now log entries about the keystore and truststore being loaded and the available URLs are HTTPS.

      2020-04-04 19:52:01,122 INFO [main] o.e.jetty.server.handler.ContextHandler Started o.e.j.w.WebAppContext@623ebac7{nifi-error,/,file:///Users/alopresto/Workspace/scratch/release_verification/nifi-1.11.4-bin/nifi-1.11.4/work/jetty/nifi-web-error-1.11.4.war/webapp/,AVAILABLE}{./work/nar/framework/nifi-framework-nar-1.11.4.nar-unpacked/NAR-INF/bundled-dependencies/nifi-web-error-1.11.4.war}
      2020-04-04 19:52:01,155 INFO [main] o.e.jetty.util.ssl.SslContextFactory x509=X509@b96fb73(nifi-key,h=[localhost],w=[]) for SslContextFactory@5edd911f[provider=null,keyStore=file:///Users/alopresto/Workspace/scratch/release_verification/nifi-1.11.4-bin/nifi-1.11.4/conf/keystore.jks,trustStore=file:///Users/alopresto/Workspace/scratch/release_verification/nifi-1.11.4-bin/nifi-1.11.4/conf/truststore.jks]
      2020-04-04 19:52:01,191 INFO [main] o.eclipse.jetty.server.AbstractConnector Started ServerConnector@767191b1{SSL,[ssl, http/1.1]}{localhost:9443}
      2020-04-04 19:52:01,192 INFO [main] org.eclipse.jetty.server.Server Started @24336ms
      2020-04-04 19:52:01,215 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.nar.NarAutoLoader Starting NAR Auto-Loader for directory ./extensions ...
      2020-04-04 19:52:01,216 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.nar.NarAutoLoader NAR Auto-Loader started
      2020-04-04 19:52:01,216 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.web.server.JettyServer NiFi has started. The UI is available at the following URLs:
      2020-04-04 19:52:01,216 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.web.server.JettyServer https://localhost:9443/nifi
      2020-04-04 19:52:01,218 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.BootstrapListener Successfully initiated communication with Bootstrap
      2020-04-04 19:52:01,219 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.NiFi Controller initialization took 16457023826 nanoseconds (16 seconds).
  4. Open the web browser to https://localhost:9443/nifi. The browser will present a warning that the site you are attempting to visit is insecure because the NiFi certificate is not signed by a trusted CA. Make an exception and acknowledge the risk (all communications are still encrypted even if the browser does not recognize the certificate). The browser may prompt to select the client certificate you wish to present to NiFi. Choose the entry for CN=my_username generated by the toolkit.

    The browser warning of an insecure server certificate

    Browser warning on untrusted server TLS certificate

    The browser prompting for a client certificate to present

    Browser prompting for client certificate to present

    The application running. Note the user’s DN in the top-right corner

Additional Notes

  • While it is recommended to configure NiFi with security immediately, some admins have already run NiFi with other configuration modifications before securing it. The TLS Toolkit provides an option to consume an existing nifi.properties file and make the security changes to it rather than using a default template. Use -f /etc/nifi-1.11.4/conf/nifi.properties or --nifiPropertiesFile /etc/nifi-1.11.4/conf/nifi.properties if this file already exists. For more toolkit options, see NiFi Toolkit Guide: TLS Toolkit Operation Modes.

  • To generate a certificate for a hostname other than localhost, use the -n somehost.com argument. To run on the local machine, DNS settings must allow for this. Either modify the /etc/hosts file or use a tool like dnsmasq to set up custom DNS routing. This is beyond the scope of this document.

  • The browser will warn about an insecure connection because it does not trust the self-signed CA certificate. To explicitly mark this certificate as trusted, follow the instructions for the relevant OS and browser combination. For example, using macOS Catalina and Google Chrome:

    1. Open the NiFi CA cert in the Keychain Access app. Double-click on nifi-cert.pem or run the following command:

      • open /etc/nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/nifi-cert.pem — Opens the certificate in Keychain Access

      • Right-click the localhost certificate and select Get Info

    Keychain Access listing certificates
    • Expand the Trust section in the dialog

    • Change Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) to Always Trust

    Trusting the CA certificate for TLS/SSL
    Browser showing trusted NiFi server certificate

Securing NiFi with Provided Certificates

This section assumes an enterprise IT department or other mechanism to provide signed certificates. For a scenario with self-signed certificates, see Securing NiFi with TLS Toolkit.

Description

Instructions on enabling Transport Layer Security (TLS) for the Apache NiFi application using provided certificates

Purpose

Securing NiFi with TLS protects data in motion and is required to enable authentication & authorization

Starting Point

Starting NiFi

Expected Outcome

Latest version of Apache NiFi running on host over TLS with client certificate authentication and authorization enabled and a single configured user

Estimated Duration

10 minutes

In this scenario, a commercial CA is used, but it could also be an enterprise CA with an internal CA certificate which is configured to be trusted by corporate machines. There are many commercial vendors providing signed certificates. For this example, TinyCert is used as it is free. Let’s Encrypt is another free provider, but requires verification of hostname ownership which involves additional steps not shown here.

For this scenario, all certificates and keys will be in Privacy-Enhanced Mail (PEM) format. This is a common format for certificates and keys. It uses Base64 encoding for the contents of the files, and can be transmitted across various mediums and storage mechanisms easily. Plain text editors can be used to view the contents, and the openssl and keytool tools can parse the contents.

Example PEM file:

% cat nifi.pem
-----BEGIN CERTIFICATE-----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-----END CERTIFICATE-----

Example parsed contents:

% openssl x509 -in nifi.pem -text -noout
Certificate:
    Data:
        Version: 3 (0x2)
        Serial Number: 20763 (0x511b)
    Signature Algorithm: sha256WithRSAEncryption
        Issuer: C=US, ST=CA, L=Santa Monica, O=Apache NiFi CA, OU=Secure Digital Certificate Signing, CN=Apache NiFi CA CA
        Validity
            Not Before: Apr  5 22:41:49 2020 GMT
            Not After : Apr  5 22:41:49 2021 GMT
        Subject: C=US, ST=CA, L=Santa Monica, O=Apache NiFi CA, OU=Apache NiFi Walkthrough, CN=secure.nifi
        Subject Public Key Info:
            Public Key Algorithm: rsaEncryption
                Public-Key: (2048 bit)
                Modulus:
                    00:c9:c9:23:17:1f:e1:5c:a3:b5:9b:5c:82:90:d6:
                    ed:51:ac:c7:7f:14:4e:f3:97:fe:bd:5f:fe:c3:6b:
                    ac:78:73:a8:e5:23:c7:f2:dc:c6:f1:66:3a:85:9c:
                    3b:09:a4:db:88:90:f5:6f:c8:77:06:0a:6f:0b:93:
                    0e:f4:0d:b0:93:52:45:ba:d0:c9:55:33:9a:f8:0a:
                    45:a1:56:03:9d:d5:10:f7:e1:0c:e1:82:47:0a:8e:
                    0d:bd:b8:eb:82:61:af:85:33:bf:2a:13:94:29:eb:
                    8c:1b:2e:90:d7:1e:9c:66:9b:8f:d0:bf:de:d1:1d:
                    d4:ea:ca:7a:91:cd:8b:3a:83:e5:72:0a:7d:78:9d:
                    7b:aa:26:9d:39:df:71:75:4f:69:21:b4:ae:33:06:
                    b2:0c:66:3e:95:a5:6c:b2:08:59:89:8e:6a:d6:df:
                    b1:9b:71:1b:b1:31:bb:5b:82:3f:b8:9b:30:f4:11:
                    ec:3a:ff:de:91:f4:0e:d6:c6:5a:b4:40:cb:91:4f:
                    3d:76:89:ef:71:4a:2f:c6:cb:34:15:da:bf:60:47:
                    3c:6e:22:8f:2a:b2:13:08:ab:67:7f:d6:98:a9:22:
                    05:8d:8f:62:f3:11:75:e8:11:b7:c7:cb:b2:70:9b:
                    bf:1e:d4:6f:fe:3d:5f:d4:2c:8c:7e:40:be:21:f4:
                    d8:bf
                Exponent: 65537 (0x10001)
        X509v3 extensions:
            X509v3 Basic Constraints:
                CA:FALSE
            X509v3 Subject Key Identifier:
                F2:83:0F:C6:05:4A:EA:30:8F:34:81:8A:5D:96:1D:CD:35:FC:2B:07
            X509v3 Authority Key Identifier:
                keyid:64:A2:F6:E9:F1:1A:9B:0F:40:5E:0F:23:DC:AC:16:20:6B:5A:F3:74

            Netscape Cert Type:
                SSL Client, SSL Server, S/MIME, Object Signing
            X509v3 Key Usage:
                Digital Signature, Non Repudiation, Key Encipherment, Data Encipherment, Key Agreement
            X509v3 Extended Key Usage:
                TLS Web Server Authentication, TLS Web Client Authentication, Code Signing, E-mail Protection, Time Stamping
            Authority Information Access:
                OCSP - URI:http://ocsp.tinycert.org/ca-2405
                CA Issuers - URI:http://aia.tinycert.org/ca-2405.crt

            X509v3 CRL Distribution Points:

                Full Name:
                  URI:http://crl.tinycert.org/ca-2405.crl

            X509v3 Subject Alternative Name:
                DNS:secure.nifi, IP Address:127.0.0.1, DNS:localhost
    Signature Algorithm: sha256WithRSAEncryption
         c0:20:2c:72:7e:09:b6:78:16:bc:27:7f:ac:0f:64:29:21:08:
         0e:73:c7:e0:31:87:aa:5b:08:24:e6:b1:db:0e:4f:08:76:41:
         fd:5e:5a:00:b9:2c:f1:8b:fc:1e:66:dd:cf:41:03:9d:34:77:
         9e:38:23:97:11:60:1f:9f:45:f5:48:c1:85:52:f2:c5:a2:b1:
         e0:02:b1:a8:96:df:6e:16:87:ef:87:6b:04:da:ad:ff:c1:20:
         48:e8:9d:bd:e3:47:58:c1:93:8f:02:57:f9:9b:b7:cd:a5:c6:
         f3:58:22:59:1a:de:cf:9f:f5:56:9b:7f:ae:3d:9a:cc:02:3f:
         86:ce:cb:d1:f4:d5:4c:67:02:bf:78:01:4c:e0:e2:8d:09:e8:
         8b:44:fb:f5:a8:b0:11:61:5a:af:2c:91:4a:b7:d7:65:0a:b1:
         ca:c8:32:c8:69:46:c6:d8:b7:30:e9:8b:7b:48:15:3b:9c:09:
         e8:6e:e6:2a:22:64:51:5e:6f:db:13:4c:70:6f:d5:fd:7c:3f:
         14:cc:97:e6:af:23:93:16:fc:f8:86:59:ed:c2:4d:5f:82:f1:
         b5:9f:84:ab:66:01:4d:66:98:35:6b:03:79:b5:76:f0:88:e7:
         62:b1:3c:2c:95:0e:3d:0b:84:02:1f:98:84:58:23:35:1c:4c:
         4b:03:91:91

The prerequisites for the scenario (issued by the IT department):

  • A signed NiFi server certificate for the specified host (secure.nifi for this example) in PEM format (nifi.pem)

  • The matching private key in PEM format (nifi.key)

  • A signed client certificate for the specified user (CN=my_username, …​ for this example) in PEM format (client.pem)

  • The matching private key in PEM format (client.key)

  • The CA certificate in PEM format (cacert.pem)

For more information on converting certificates between various forms, see Toolkit Guide: Additional Certificate Commands.

The end result will consist of a self-signed external CA (the root), a keystore and truststore containing the necessary certificates for the NiFi instance to operate, and a client certificate for a human user to access NiFi.

NiFi TLS Standalone Provided Certificate Diagram
Depending on the version of Java used, some commands below may display a warning Warning: The JKS keystore uses a proprietary format. It is recommended to migrate to PKCS12 which is an industry standard format using "keytool -importkeystore -srckeystore keystore.jks -destkeystore keystore.jks -deststoretype pkcs12". As of version 1.11.4, NiFi still handles JKS keystores better than PKCS12 keystores, but either is acceptable. This may change in future versions. PKCS12 keystores are used for client certificates and keys as browsers prefer loading this format.
  1. Start in the directory where NiFi was downloaded and unarchived. For this section, the directory /etc/nifi-1.11.4 will be used. This directory will be referred to as the "NiFi home directory" and can be set explicitly (this is not done automatically by NiFi nor is it required).

    • export NIFI_HOME="/etc/nifi-1.11.4/" — Sets an environment variable ($NIFI_HOME) which references the installation directory (optional)

    • cd /etc/nifi-1.11.4 — Changes the terminal to the NiFi home directory

    • ls -alGh — Lists the contents of the directory (optional)

      NiFi Home directory contents
  2. Determine if the server certificate (nifi.pem) contains the complete certificate chain or just the server certificate. If the sequence -----BEGIN CERTIFICATE----- occurs only once, this is just the server certificate. If it occurs multiple times, the certificate chain is present. If the certificate chain is present, continue with Step 4. If it is not present, continue to Step 3.

    • cat nifi.pem — Prints the Base64-encoded contents

  3. Concatenate the server certificate and CA certificate to form the certificate chain.

    • cat cacert.pem >> nifi.pem — Concatenates the CA certificate to the NiFi server certificate in the proper order

  4. Form the PKCS12 keystore from the certificate chain and private key.

    • openssl pkcs12 -export -out nifi.p12 -inkey nifi.key -in nifi.pem -name nifi-key — Generates the PKCS12 keystore containing the private key and certificate chain under the alias nifi-key. The command will prompt for an export password. Choose a secure password and enter it twice for confirmation (for this scenario, the bad example passwordpassword is used)

    • keytool -list -v -keystore nifi.p12 — Verifies the contents of the PKCS12 keystore (optional). This command will prompt for the same password entered on the previous step

      The certificate chain length is 2, starting with the server certificate and including the CA certificate.
      keytool -list -v -keystore nifi.p12
      Enter keystore password:
      Keystore type: PKCS12
      Keystore provider: SUN
      
      Your keystore contains 1 entry
      
      Alias name: 1
      Creation date: Apr 5, 2020
      Entry type: PrivateKeyEntry
      Certificate chain length: 2
      Certificate[1]:
      Owner: CN=secure.nifi, OU=Apache NiFi Walkthrough, O=Apache NiFi CA, L=Santa Monica, ST=CA, C=US
      Issuer: CN=Apache NiFi CA CA, OU=Secure Digital Certificate Signing, O=Apache NiFi CA, L=Santa Monica, ST=CA, C=US
      Serial number: 511b
      Valid from: Sun Apr 05 15:41:49 PDT 2020 until: Mon Apr 05 15:41:49 PDT 2021
      Certificate fingerprints:
      	 SHA1: C7:DD:26:7F:8E:25:45:2E:02:FE:34:FA:89:42:D8:BE:5B:88:AB:2D
      	 SHA256: 6E:A6:6C:BB:88:E3:24:99:5C:EB:C7:B8:02:D1:30:C4:AC:6D:0C:F2:40:46:DA:CB:6A:15:13:B7:49:40:FA:99
      Signature algorithm name: SHA256withRSA
      Subject Public Key Algorithm: 2048-bit RSA key
      Version: 3
      
      Extensions:
      
      #1: ObjectId: 1.3.6.1.5.5.7.1.1 Criticality=false
      AuthorityInfoAccess [
        [
         accessMethod: ocsp
         accessLocation: URIName: http://ocsp.tinycert.org/ca-2405
      ,
         accessMethod: caIssuers
         accessLocation: URIName: http://aia.tinycert.org/ca-2405.crt
      ]
      ]
      
      #2: ObjectId: 2.5.29.35 Criticality=false
      AuthorityKeyIdentifier [
      KeyIdentifier [
      0000: 64 A2 F6 E9 F1 1A 9B 0F   40 5E 0F 23 DC AC 16 20  d.......@^.#...
      0010: 6B 5A F3 74                                        kZ.t
      ]
      ]
      
      #3: ObjectId: 2.5.29.19 Criticality=false
      BasicConstraints:[
        CA:false
        PathLen: undefined
      ]
      
      #4: ObjectId: 2.5.29.31 Criticality=false
      CRLDistributionPoints [
        [DistributionPoint:
           [URIName: http://crl.tinycert.org/ca-2405.crl]
      ]]
      
      #5: ObjectId: 2.5.29.37 Criticality=false
      ExtendedKeyUsages [
        serverAuth
        clientAuth
        codeSigning
        emailProtection
        timeStamping
      ]
      
      #6: ObjectId: 2.5.29.15 Criticality=false
      KeyUsage [
        DigitalSignature
        Non_repudiation
        Key_Encipherment
        Data_Encipherment
        Key_Agreement
      ]
      
      #7: ObjectId: 2.16.840.1.113730.1.1 Criticality=false
      NetscapeCertType [
         SSL client
         SSL server
         S/MIME
         Object Signing
      ]
      
      #8: ObjectId: 2.5.29.17 Criticality=false
      SubjectAlternativeName [
        DNSName: secure.nifi
        IPAddress: 127.0.0.1
        DNSName: localhost
      ]
      
      #9: ObjectId: 2.5.29.14 Criticality=false
      SubjectKeyIdentifier [
      KeyIdentifier [
      0000: F2 83 0F C6 05 4A EA 30   8F 34 81 8A 5D 96 1D CD  .....J.0.4..]...
      0010: 35 FC 2B 07                                        5.+.
      ]
      ]
      
      Certificate[2]:
      Owner: CN=Apache NiFi CA CA, OU=Secure Digital Certificate Signing, O=Apache NiFi CA, L=Santa Monica, ST=CA, C=US
      Issuer: CN=Apache NiFi CA CA, OU=Secure Digital Certificate Signing, O=Apache NiFi CA, L=Santa Monica, ST=CA, C=US
      Serial number: 0
      Valid from: Mon Feb 08 20:24:06 PST 2016 until: Thu Feb 05 20:24:06 PST 2026
      Certificate fingerprints:
      	 SHA1: E9:CA:EF:26:C7:2A:AF:7A:FD:BC:97:12:ED:F5:6B:3B:79:40:D2:A3
      	 SHA256: 4C:0A:2F:C4:D3:CC:B5:A8:0E:0B:95:EE:0C:E6:60:7C:85:78:7A:58:77:BB:87:58:12:9B:D1:E4:BA:E0:9B:67
      Signature algorithm name: SHA256withRSA
      Subject Public Key Algorithm: 2048-bit RSA key
      Version: 3
      
      Extensions:
      
      #1: ObjectId: 2.5.29.19 Criticality=true
      BasicConstraints:[
        CA:true
        PathLen:2147483647
      ]
      
      #2: ObjectId: 2.5.29.31 Criticality=false
      CRLDistributionPoints [
        [DistributionPoint:
           [URIName: http://crl.tinycert.org/ca-2405.crl]
      ]]
      
      #3: ObjectId: 2.5.29.18 Criticality=false
      IssuerAlternativeName [
        RFC822Name: andy@andylopresto.com
      ]
      
      #4: ObjectId: 2.5.29.15 Criticality=true
      KeyUsage [
        DigitalSignature
        Key_Encipherment
        Key_Agreement
        Key_CertSign
      ]
      
      #5: ObjectId: 2.5.29.17 Criticality=false
      SubjectAlternativeName [
        RFC822Name: andy@andylopresto.com
      ]
      
      #6: ObjectId: 2.5.29.14 Criticality=false
      SubjectKeyIdentifier [
      KeyIdentifier [
      0000: 64 A2 F6 E9 F1 1A 9B 0F   40 5E 0F 23 DC AC 16 20  d.......@^.#...
      0010: 6B 5A F3 74                                        kZ.t
      ]
      ]
      
      
      
      *******************************************
      *******************************************
  5. Convert the PKCS12 keystore for the NiFi instance into the Java KeyStore file (keystore.jks). PKCS12 keystores are usable by NiFi, but JKS format is handled more robustly and causes fewer edge cases. JKS keystores cannot be formed directly from PEM files, so the PKCS12 keystore serves as an intermediate form.

    • keytool -importkeystore -srckeystore nifi.p12 -srcstoretype pkcs12 -srcalias nifi-key -destkeystore keystore.jks -deststoretype jks -destalias nifi-key — Converts the PKCS12 keystore to a JKS keystore. This command will prompt for a new keystore password twice, then prompt for the password set on the PKCS12 keystore from the previous step

  6. Convert the CA certificate into the NiFi truststore (truststore.jks) to allow trusted incoming connections.

    • keytool -importcert -alias nifi-cert -file cacert.pem -keystore truststore.jks — Imports the CA certificate into the truststore. This command will prompt for a new truststore password twice

      % keytool -importcert -alias nifi-cert -file cacert.pem -keystore truststore.jks
      Enter keystore password:
      Re-enter new password:
      Owner: CN=Apache NiFi CA CA, OU=Secure Digital Certificate Signing, O=Apache NiFi CA, L=Santa Monica, ST=CA, C=US
      Issuer: CN=Apache NiFi CA CA, OU=Secure Digital Certificate Signing, O=Apache NiFi CA, L=Santa Monica, ST=CA, C=US
      Serial number: 0
      Valid from: Mon Feb 08 20:24:06 PST 2016 until: Thu Feb 05 20:24:06 PST 2026
      Certificate fingerprints:
      	 SHA1: E9:CA:EF:26:C7:2A:AF:7A:FD:BC:97:12:ED:F5:6B:3B:79:40:D2:A3
      	 SHA256: 4C:0A:2F:C4:D3:CC:B5:A8:0E:0B:95:EE:0C:E6:60:7C:85:78:7A:58:77:BB:87:58:12:9B:D1:E4:BA:E0:9B:67
      Signature algorithm name: SHA256withRSA
      Subject Public Key Algorithm: 2048-bit RSA key
      Version: 3
      
      Extensions:
      
      #1: ObjectId: 2.5.29.19 Criticality=true
      BasicConstraints:[
        CA:true
        PathLen:2147483647
      ]
      
      #2: ObjectId: 2.5.29.31 Criticality=false
      CRLDistributionPoints [
        [DistributionPoint:
           [URIName: http://crl.tinycert.org/ca-2405.crl]
      ]]
      
      #3: ObjectId: 2.5.29.18 Criticality=false
      IssuerAlternativeName [
        RFC822Name: andy@andylopresto.com
      ]
      
      #4: ObjectId: 2.5.29.15 Criticality=true
      KeyUsage [
        DigitalSignature
        Key_Encipherment
        Key_Agreement
        Key_CertSign
      ]
      
      #5: ObjectId: 2.5.29.17 Criticality=false
      SubjectAlternativeName [
        RFC822Name: andy@andylopresto.com
      ]
      
      #6: ObjectId: 2.5.29.14 Criticality=false
      SubjectKeyIdentifier [
      KeyIdentifier [
      0000: 64 A2 F6 E9 F1 1A 9B 0F   40 5E 0F 23 DC AC 16 20  d.......@^.#...
      0010: 6B 5A F3 74                                        kZ.t
      ]
      ]
      
      Trust this certificate? [no]:  yes
      Certificate was added to keystore
  7. Optionally, move the keystore.jks and truststore.jks files into the conf/ directory. This step is not required, but helps with organization.

  8. Configure the nifi.properties file with the necessary values. This includes setting the hostname, ports, and keystore and truststore paths and passwords.

    • $EDITOR conf/nifi.properties — Opens the nifi.properties file in a text editor

    • Update the following lines:

      • nifi.remote.input.host=nifi.remote.input.host=secure.nifi

      • nifi.remote.input.secure=falsenifi.remote.input.secure=true

      • nifi.remote.input.socket.port=nifi.remote.input.socket.port=10443

      • nifi.web.http.port=8080nifi.web.http.port=

      • nifi.web.https.host=nifi.web.https.host=secure.nifi

      • nifi.web.https.port=nifi.web.https.port=9443

      • nifi.security.keystore=nifi.security.keystore=./conf/keystore.jks

      • nifi.security.keystoreType=nifi.security.keystoreType=jks

      • nifi.security.keystorePasswd=nifi.security.keystorePasswd=passwordpassword

      • nifi.security.truststore=nifi.security.truststore=./conf/truststore.jks

      • nifi.security.truststoreType=nifi.security.truststoreType=jks

      • nifi.security.truststorePasswd=nifi.security.truststorePasswd=passwordpassword

  9. Generate the client certificate keystore from the client certificate and key.

    • openssl pkcs12 -export -out CN=my_username.p12 -inkey client.key -in client.pem — Creates the PKCS12 keystore containing the client certificate and private key. This command prompts for an export password twice

From this point, the instructions are identical to those using the TLS Toolkit, starting at Loading the client certificate in the browser.

Securing NiFi with TLS Toolkit and Provided Intermediate CA

Occasionally, an IT department will provide an intermediate CA certificate which is signed by a trusted certificate and can be used to generate server and client certificates on-demand by the NiFi admin without further intervention by the IT department. The TLS toolkit provides a mechanism to use the intermediate certificate to sign generated certificates.

The end result will consist of a self-signed external CA (the root), an intermediate CA used to sign NiFi certificates, a keystore and truststore containing the necessary certificates for the NiFi instance to operate, and a client certificate for a human user to access NiFi.

Develop section

Deploying a NiFi Cluster

Apache NiFi can run in either standalone or clustered mode. A standalone node is often sufficient for dataflow operations, but in a production or high-volume environment, a cluster is more performant and resilient. For more information, see NiFi Administrator’s Guide: Clustering.

Configuring a Host to Resolve Arbitrary DNS Hostnames

This section provides instructions to configure a single host machine to resolve dynamic hostnames via DNS using a tool called dnsmasq. This is useful if deploying a NiFi cluster to a single host machine to logically separate nodes running side-by-side. There are many options to achieve this outcome; this is one approach.

Description

Instructions on installing and configuring dynamic DNS hostname resolution

Purpose

A NiFi cluster with multiple nodes needs to communicate between them and if all nodes are localhost, this is confusing and doesn’t support certificates for unique hostnames.

Starting Point

N/A

Expected Outcome

The host machine can resolve arbitrary DNS hostnames without impacting normal network connectivity

Helpful Reading

N/A

Estimated Duration

5 minutes

Machines resolve DNS hostnames (e.g. nifi.apache.org) to IP addresses (95.216.24.32). Each node in a NiFi cluster needs a hostname (e.g. node1.nificluster.com) to use while serving the UI/API and to communicate with peer nodes. When deploying a cluster of multiple nodes on the same physical/virtual host, each node can receive a different, non-conflicting set of ports, but the hostname (localhost) would conflict. By allowing arbitrary hostname resolution, each node can reside side-by-side but be identified uniquely.

For this guide, any hostname which ends in .nifi will resolve to localhost.

Prerequisites:

  • A *nix (or similar) operating system

  • A package manager (e.g. apt-get, yum, brew). The instructions below use brew; substitute the command for the relevant package manager inline

The end result will resolve *.nifi hostnames to the local machine and all other names with the pre-existing DNS resolution services.

  1. Install and configure dnsmasq.

    1. Install dnsmasq.

      • brew install dnsmasq

        host@macbook ~ % brew install dnsmasq
        ==> Downloading https://homebrew.bintray.com/bottles/dnsmasq-2.81.catalina.bottle.tar.gz
        ==> Downloading from https://akamai.bintray.com/e4/e46052d3d5ae49135b80d383a9d89...
        ######################################################################## 100.0%
        ==> Pouring dnsmasq-2.81.catalina.bottle.tar.gz
        ==> Caveats
        To have launchd start dnsmasq now and restart at startup:
        sudo brew services start dnsmasq
        ==> Summary
        /usr/local/Cellar/dnsmasq/2.81: 8 files, 543.9KB
    2. Start dnsmasq using the service manager.

      • sudo brew services start dnsmasq

    3. Make a new file development.conf in /usr/local/etc/dnsmasq.d/. This file defines the address pattern to resolve. Here, $EDITOR is an environment variable defined as path to a text editor. You can use any text editor of your choice (Sublime Text, Atom, vi, emacs, nano, etc.).

      • $EDITOR /usr/local/etc/dnsmasq.d/development.conf — creates and opens development.conf file for editing

    4. Populate the development.conf with the address pattern. The address/ line defines the pattern and the # Direct line is a comment describing the pattern.

      • Add the following lines to development.conf:

        # Test NiFi instances
        address=/.nifi/127.0.0.1
        # Direct any hostnames ending in .nifi to 127.0.0.1
    5. Create a directory resolver in /etc directory.

      • sudo mkdir /etc/resolver — creates 'resolver' directory

    6. Create a new file nifi in /etc/resolver/. This filename must match the top-level domain (TLD) to be resolved (e.g. hostname.nifinifi, hostname.exampleexample).

      • sudo $EDITOR /etc/resolver/nifi

    7. Populate the nifi file and register a new DNS resolver (dnsmasq running on this host) with the OS.

      • Add the following line to nifi:

        nameserver 127.0.0.1
    8. Restart dnsmasq:

      • sudo brew services restart dnsmasq

  2. To test successful deployment of the new DNS resolver, ping two addresses. One is an external site not hosted by this machine to demonstrate that regular DNS functionality remains, and the other is a new hostname which this machine will respond to.

    1. Ping an existing website hosted externally (https://nifi.apache.org).

      • ping -c 1 nifi.apache.org

        PING nifi.apache.org (95.216.24.32): 56 data bytes
        64 bytes from 95.216.24.32: icmp_seq=0 ttl=48 time=189.600 ms

        Here the nifi.apache.org resolution is done by the system’s default DNS resolver and resolves to 95.216.24.32 (not this machine).

    2. Ping a non-existent website which this machine should resolve locally (http://imaginary.node.nifi).

      • ping -c 1 imaginary.node.nifi

        PING imaginary.node.nifi (127.0.0.1): 56 data bytes
        64 bytes from 127.0.0.1: icmp_seq=0 ttl=64 time=0.026 ms

        Here the *.nifi resolution redirects to the host machine’s IP (127.0.0.1) which was configured via the /etc/resolver/nifi file.

Creating a NiFi Cluster

Description

Instructions on configuring a 3 node unsecured cluster

Purpose

A NiFi cluster can perform flow operations in parallel and provide resiliency if nodes are unavailable.

Starting Point

Installing Apache NiFi or Building NiFi from Source

Expected Outcome

3 nodes of latest version of Apache NiFi in an unsecured cluster running on local machine

Helpful Reading

Starting NiFi

Estimated Duration

10 minutes

Needs a diagram
Develop section
  1. Copy the NiFi run directory 3x

  2. Configure the settings

  3. Start each node

Creating and Securing a NiFi Cluster with the TLS Toolkit

This section assumes no enterprise IT department to provide signed certificates. For a scenario with provided certificates, see Securing NiFi with Provided Certificates.

Description

Instructions on configuring and securing a 3 node cluster

Purpose

A NiFi cluster can perform flow operations in parallel and provide resiliency if nodes are unavailable.

Starting Point

Installing Apache NiFi or Building NiFi from Source

Expected Outcome

3 nodes of latest version of Apache NiFi in secured cluster running on local machine

Helpful Reading

Securing NiFi with TLS Toolkit, Creating a NiFi Cluster, Configuring a Host to Resolve Arbitrary DNS Hostnames

Estimated Duration

15 minutes

Similar to a standalone instance, a NiFi cluster must have TLS configured to enable authentication and authorization mechanisms. However, the cluster communication protocol used by NiFi and the framework authentication and authorization must also be configured to allow nodes to communicate.

For this guide, the three nodes will be referred to as node1, node2, and node3. Each will have a $NIFI_HOME environment variable which points to the respective "NiFi home directory".

Prerequisites:

  • DNS configuration for three hosts using the addresses node1.nifi, node2.nifi, node3.nifi

    • This can be all side-by-side on the same physical host, using virtual machines, or using independent physical machines

  • Ports open to allow the nodes to communicate

    • If these machines are subject to a firewall, ensure that the following ports are open:

      • 2181, 2888, 3888 — ZooKeeper ports

      • 6342 — Load-balancing port

      • 9443 — HTTPS port for NiFi UI/API

      • 10443 — Site to site port

      • 11443 — Cluster communications port

    • If all the nodes will run on the same machine, the port scheme will end in the respective node identifier to avoid conflicts (e.g. HTTPS port 9441 for node1, 9442 for node2, 9443 for node3). Ensure that the following ports are open:

      • 2181, 2182, 2183 — ZooKeeper ports (client port)

      • 2881, 2882, 2883 — ZooKeeper ports (node connection port)

      • 3881, 3882, 3883 — ZooKeeper ports (leader election port)

      • 6341, 6342, 6343 — Load-balancing port

      • 9441, 9442, 9443 — HTTPS port for NiFi UI/API

      • 10441, 10442, 10443 — Site to site port

      • 11441, 11442, 11443 — Cluster communications port

The end result will consist of a self-signed external CA (the root), a keystore and truststore containing the necessary certificates for each NiFi node to operate, and a client certificate for a human user to access NiFi.

NiFi Cluster with TLS Toolkit Certificates Diagram
  1. Create the NiFi Client Certificates. When using the standalone mode of the TLS Toolkit, it is important that all certificates are generated from the same instance, using the same generated NiFi CA certificate to sign each. The certificates can be generated by a single command, or individually. By default, the Distinguished Name (DN) will be CN=<provided_hostname>, OU=NIFI. For more information on toolkit flag options, see NiFi Toolkit Guide: TLS Toolkit Usage.

    1. Navigate to the nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/ directory.

      • cd /etc/nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/ — Changes to the toolkit directory

    2. Generate the certificates. Running these commands first generates the NiFi CA public certificate and private key if not present, then generates the server certificates, followed by the client certificate necessary for the Initial Admin Identity. An alternative command performing all the steps sequentially is also provided.

      • ./bin/tls-toolkit.sh standalone -n 'node1.nifi' -c 'ca.nifi' — Generates the NiFi CA (ca.nifi) certificate and key if not present and generates and signs node1 certificate, placing the keystore.jks, truststore.jks, and populated nifi.properties in a subdirectory called node1.nifi

        Note the creation of the CA certificate and key

        % ./bin/tls-toolkit.sh standalone -n 'node1.nifi' -c 'ca.nifi'
        2020/04/06 18:12:07 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandaloneCommandLine: No nifiPropertiesFile specified, using embedded one.
        2020/04/06 18:12:07 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Running standalone certificate generation with output directory ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4
        2020/04/06 18:12:08 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Generated new CA certificate ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/nifi-cert.pem and key ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/nifi-key.key
        2020/04/06 18:12:08 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Writing new ssl configuration to ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/node1.nifi
        2020/04/06 18:12:08 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Successfully generated TLS configuration for node1.nifi 1 in ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/node1.nifi
        2020/04/06 18:12:08 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: No clientCertDn specified, not generating any client certificates.
        2020/04/06 18:12:08 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: tls-toolkit standalone completed successfully
        % ls -alGh node1.nifi
        total 48
        drwx------   5 alopresto  staff   160B Apr  6 18:12 .
        drwxr-xr-x  11 alopresto  staff   352B Apr  6 18:12 ..
        -rw-------   1 alopresto  staff   3.0K Apr  6 18:12 keystore.jks
        -rw-------   1 alopresto  staff    12K Apr  6 18:12 nifi.properties
        -rw-------   1 alopresto  staff   895B Apr  6 18:12 truststore.jks
      • ./bin/tls-toolkit.sh standalone -n 'node2.nifi' — Generates and signs node2 certificate with the same CA

        Note the existing CA certificate being used

        % ./bin/tls-toolkit.sh standalone -n 'node2.nifi'
        2020/04/06 18:13:13 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandaloneCommandLine: No nifiPropertiesFile specified, using embedded one.
        2020/04/06 18:13:14 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Running standalone certificate generation with output directory ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4
        2020/04/06 18:13:14 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.util.TlsHelper: Verifying the certificate signature for CN=ca.nifi,OU=NIFI
        2020/04/06 18:13:14 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.util.TlsHelper: Attempting to verify certificate CN=ca.nifi,OU=NIFI signature with CN=ca.nifi,OU=NIFI
        2020/04/06 18:13:14 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.util.TlsHelper: Certificate was signed by CN=ca.nifi,OU=NIFI
        2020/04/06 18:13:14 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Using existing CA certificate ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/nifi-cert.pem and key ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/nifi-key.key
        2020/04/06 18:13:14 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Writing new ssl configuration to ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/node2.nifi
        2020/04/06 18:13:14 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Successfully generated TLS configuration for node2.nifi 1 in ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/node2.nifi
        2020/04/06 18:13:14 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: No clientCertDn specified, not generating any client certificates.
        2020/04/06 18:13:14 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: tls-toolkit standalone completed successfully
      • ./bin/tls-toolkit.sh standalone -n 'node3.nifi' — Generates and signs node3 certificate with the same CA

        % ./bin/tls-toolkit.sh standalone -n 'node3.nifi'
        2020/04/06 18:53:07 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandaloneCommandLine: No nifiPropertiesFile specified, using embedded one.
        2020/04/06 18:53:08 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Running standalone certificate generation with output directory ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4
        2020/04/06 18:53:08 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.util.TlsHelper: Verifying the certificate signature for CN=ca.nifi,OU=NIFI
        2020/04/06 18:53:08 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.util.TlsHelper: Attempting to verify certificate CN=ca.nifi,OU=NIFI signature with CN=ca.nifi,OU=NIFI
        2020/04/06 18:53:08 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.util.TlsHelper: Certificate was signed by CN=ca.nifi,OU=NIFI
        2020/04/06 18:53:08 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Using existing CA certificate ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/nifi-cert.pem and key ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/nifi-key.key
        2020/04/06 18:53:08 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Writing new ssl configuration to ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/node3.nifi
        2020/04/06 18:53:08 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Successfully generated TLS configuration for node3.nifi 1 in ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/node3.nifi
        2020/04/06 18:53:08 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: No clientCertDn specified, not generating any client certificates.
        2020/04/06 18:53:08 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: tls-toolkit standalone completed successfully
      • ./bin/tls-toolkit.sh standalone -C 'CN=my_username' — Generates and signs my_username client certificate with the same CA

        % ./bin/tls-toolkit.sh standalone -C 'CN=my_username'
        2020/04/06 18:53:19 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandaloneCommandLine: No nifiPropertiesFile specified, using embedded one.
        2020/04/06 18:53:20 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Running standalone certificate generation with output directory ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4
        2020/04/06 18:53:20 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.util.TlsHelper: Verifying the certificate signature for CN=ca.nifi,OU=NIFI
        2020/04/06 18:53:20 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.util.TlsHelper: Attempting to verify certificate CN=ca.nifi,OU=NIFI signature with CN=ca.nifi,OU=NIFI
        2020/04/06 18:53:20 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.util.TlsHelper: Certificate was signed by CN=ca.nifi,OU=NIFI
        2020/04/06 18:53:20 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Using existing CA certificate ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/nifi-cert.pem and key ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/nifi-key.key
        2020/04/06 18:53:20 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: No hostnames specified, not generating any host certificates or configuration.
        2020/04/06 18:53:20 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Generating new client certificate ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/CN=my_username.p12
        2020/04/06 18:53:20 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: Successfully generated client certificate ../nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/CN=my_username.p12
        2020/04/06 18:53:20 INFO [main] org.apache.nifi.toolkit.tls.standalone.TlsToolkitStandalone: tls-toolkit standalone completed successfully

        The resulting directory will contain 7 new entries:

        • CN=my_username.p12 — The client certificate in a PKCS12 keystore

        • CN=my_username.password — The corresponding file containing the randomly-generated password. Use -b or --clientCertPassword when generating to specify a password

        • nifi-cert.pem — The CA certificate in PEM format

        • nifi-key.key — The corresponding CA private key in PEM format

        • node1.nifi/ — The directory containing node1 keystore and related files

        • node2.nifi/ — The directory containing node2 keystore and related files

        • node3.nifi/ — The directory containing node3 keystore and related files

        Optional command to execute all steps together using the toolkit pattern syntax:

      • ./bin/tls-toolkit.sh standalone -n 'node[1-3].nifi' -C 'CN=my_username' -c 'ca.nifi' — Performs all steps listed above simultaneously

  2. Create a new nifi_cluster folder in an appropriate location. In this example, where all three nodes will run on the same machine, the /etc/nifi_cluster directory is used. All further instructions occur from this directory.

    • mkdir /etc/nifi_cluster — Creates the working directory

    • cd /etc/nifi_cluster — Change to the created directory

  3. Copy the NiFi installation folder (i.e. nifi-1.11.4) to a new folder for each node in the nifi_cluster folder created in the previous step.

    • mkdir node1.nifi && cp -R /etc/nifi-1.11.4 node1.nifi — Creates the node1 directory and copies the NiFi application into it

    • mkdir node2.nifi && cp -R /etc/nifi-1.11.4 node2.nifi — Creates the node2 directory and copies the NiFi application into it

    • mkdir node3.nifi && cp -R /etc/nifi-1.11.4 node3.nifi — Creates the node3 directory and copies the NiFi application into it

  4. Copy the generated keystore.jks, truststore.jks, and nifi.properties to the conf/ directory of each node.

    • cp -R /etc/nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/node1.nifi/* node1.nifi/conf/. — Copies the node1 files

    • cp -R /etc/nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/node2.nifi/* node2.nifi/conf/. — Copies the node2 files

    • cp -R /etc/nifi-toolkit-1.11.4/node3.nifi/* node3.nifi/conf/. — Copies the node3 files

  5. Modify the nifi.properties file for each node to set the appropriate ports and enable the embedded ZooKeeper server. If the nodes are being deployed to separate physical or virtual machines (such that each is treated as an independent host for networking), modifying the ports is not required, but enabling the embedded ZooKeeper servers is. If the nodes are being deployed on the same machine such that the ports cannot conflict, all parts of this step are required. This port selection convention follows the pattern defined at the top of this section, where the last digit corresponds to the node identifier. For more information on ZooKeeper configuration for NiFi, see NiFi Administrator’s Guide: Embedded ZooKeeper.

    The nifi.cluster.load.balance.host= entry must be manually populated here because it was added after the TLS Toolkit was last updated. The toolkit correctly populates the hostname in all other necessary properties.
    • $EDITOR node1.nifi/conf/nifi.properties — Opens the nifi.properties file in a text editor

    • Update the following lines:

      • nifi.state.management.embedded.zookeeper.start=falsenifi.state.management.embedded.zookeeper.start=true

      • nifi.remote.input.socket.port=10443nifi.remote.input.socket.port=10441

      • nifi.web.https.port=9443nifi.web.https.port=9441

      • nifi.cluster.is.node=falsenifi.cluster.is.node=true

      • nifi.cluster.node.protocol.port=11443nifi.cluster.node.protocol.port=11441

      • nifi.cluster.load.balance.host=nifi.cluster.load.balance.host=node1.nifi

      • nifi.cluster.load.balance.port=6342nifi.cluster.load.balance.port=6341

      • nifi.zookeeper.connect.string=nifi.zookeeper.connect.string=node1.nifi:2181,node2.nifi:2182,node3.nifi:2183

    • $EDITOR node2.nifi/conf/nifi.properties — Opens the nifi.properties file in a text editor. Note that the nifi.cluster.load.balance.port=6342 does not need to change for node2 and is included for completeness

    • Update the following lines:

      • nifi.state.management.embedded.zookeeper.start=falsenifi.state.management.embedded.zookeeper.start=true

      • nifi.remote.input.socket.port=10443nifi.remote.input.socket.port=10442

      • nifi.web.https.port=9443nifi.web.https.port=9442

      • nifi.cluster.is.node=falsenifi.cluster.is.node=true

      • nifi.cluster.node.protocol.port=11443nifi.cluster.node.protocol.port=11442

      • nifi.cluster.load.balance.host=nifi.cluster.load.balance.host=node2.nifi

      • nifi.cluster.load.balance.port=6342nifi.cluster.load.balance.port=6342

      • nifi.zookeeper.connect.string=nifi.zookeeper.connect.string=node1.nifi:2181,node2.nifi:2182,node3.nifi:2183

    • $EDITOR node3.nifi/conf/nifi.properties — Opens the nifi.properties file in a text editor. Note that some of the ports do not need to change for node3 and are included for completeness

    • Update the following lines:

      • nifi.state.management.embedded.zookeeper.start=falsenifi.state.management.embedded.zookeeper.start=true

      • nifi.remote.input.socket.port=10443nifi.remote.input.socket.port=10443

      • nifi.web.https.port=9443nifi.web.https.port=9443

      • nifi.cluster.is.node=falsenifi.cluster.is.node=true

      • nifi.cluster.node.protocol.port=11443nifi.cluster.node.protocol.port=11443

      • nifi.cluster.load.balance.host=nifi.cluster.load.balance.host=node3.nifi

      • nifi.cluster.load.balance.port=6342nifi.cluster.load.balance.port=6343

      • nifi.zookeeper.connect.string=nifi.zookeeper.connect.string=node1.nifi:2181,node2.nifi:2182,node3.nifi:2183

  6. Update the zookeeper.properties file on each node. This file contains the addresses of each embedded ZooKeeper server in the cluster. The zookeeper.properties file can be identical on each embedded ZooKeeper server (assuming no other changes were made), so the modified file will be copied to the other nodes.

    • $EDITOR node1.nifi/conf/zookeeper.properties — Opens the zookeeper.properties file in a text editor

    • Update the following lines:

      • server.1=server.1=node1.nifi:2881:3881;2181

      • Add the line server.2=node2.nifi:2882:3882;2182

      • Add the line server.3=node3.nifi:2883:3883;2183

    • cp node1.nifi/conf/zookeeper.properties node2.nifi/conf/zookeeper.properties — Copies the modified zookeeper.properties file from node1 to node2

    • cp node1.nifi/conf/zookeeper.properties node3.nifi/conf/zookeeper.properties — Copies the modified zookeeper.properties file from node1 to node3

  7. Create the myid file on each node to identify the embedded ZooKeeper server.

    • mkdir -p node1.nifi/state/zookeeper — Creates the ZooKeeper directory on node1

    • echo 1 >> node1.nifi/state/zookeeper/myid — Creates the myid file with the node1 identifier

    • mkdir -p node2.nifi/state/zookeeper — Creates the ZooKeeper directory on node2

    • echo 2 >> node2.nifi/state/zookeeper/myid — Creates the myid file with the node2 identifier

    • mkdir -p node3.nifi/state/zookeeper — Creates the ZooKeeper directory on node3

    • echo 3 >> node3.nifi/state/zookeeper/myid — Creates the myid file with the node3 identifier

  8. Update the state-management.xml file on each node to allow ZooKeeper connections. The state-management.xml file can be identical on each node (assuming no other changes were made), so the modified file will be copied to the other nodes.

    • $EDITOR node1.nifi/conf/state-management.xml — Opens the state-management.xml file in a text editor

    • Update the following line:

      • <property name="Connect String"></property><property name="Connect String">node1.nifi:2181,node2.nifi:2182,node3.nifi:2183</property>

    • cp node1.nifi/conf/state-management.xml node2.nifi/conf/state-management.xml — Copies the modified state-management.xml file from node1 to node2

    • cp node1.nifi/conf/state-management.xml node3.nifi/conf/state-management.xml — Copies the modified state-management.xml file from node1 to node3

  9. Update the authorizers.xml file. This file contains the Initial Node Identities and Initial User Identities. The users consist of all human users and all nodes in the cluster. The authorizers.xml file can be identical on each node (assuming no other changes were made), so the modified file will be copied to the other nodes.

    Each Initial User Identity must have a unique name (Initial User Identity 1, Initial User Identity 2, etc.).
    • $EDITOR node1.nifi/conf/authorizers.xml — Opens the authorizers.xml file in a text editor

    • Update the following lines:

      • In the <userGroupProvider> section, <property name="Initial User Identity 1"></property><property name="Initial User Identity 1">CN=my_username</property> — Adds an initial user with the DN generated in the client certificate

      • In the <userGroupProvider> section, add the line <property name="Initial User Identity 2">CN=node1.nifi, OU=NIFI</property> — Adds an initial user for node1

      • In the <userGroupProvider> section, add the line <property name="Initial User Identity 3">CN=node2.nifi, OU=NIFI</property> — Adds an initial user for node2

      • In the <userGroupProvider> section, add the line <property name="Initial User Identity 4">CN=node3.nifi, OU=NIFI</property> — Adds an initial user for node3

        authorizers.xml with Initial User Identities
      • In the <accessPolicyProvider> section, <property name="Initial Admin Identity"></property><property name="Initial Admin Identity">CN=my_username</property> — Adds an initial admin with the DN generated in the client certificate

      • In the <accessPolicyProvider> section, <property name="Node Identity 1"></property><property name="Node Identity 1">CN=node1.nifi, OU=NIFI</property> — Adds an initial node with the DN generated in the node1 certificate

      • In the <accessPolicyProvider> section, add the line <property name="Node Identity 2">CN=node2.nifi, OU=NIFI</property>

      • In the <accessPolicyProvider> section, add the line <property name="Node Identity 3">CN=node3.nifi, OU=NIFI</property>

        authorizers.xml with Initial Node Identities
    • cp node1.nifi/conf/authorizers.xml node2.nifi/conf/authorizers.xml — Copies the modified authorizers.xml file from node1 to node2

    • cp node1.nifi/conf/authorizers.xml node3.nifi/conf/authorizers.xml — Copies the modified authorizers.xml file from node1 to node3

  10. By default, NiFi waits for nodes to join for 5 minutes before the cluster is available. Because the number of nodes is known, this delay can be modified on each node to start up much faster. (Optional)

    • $EDITOR node1.nifi/conf/nifi.properties — Opens the nifi.properties file in a text editor

    • Update the following lines:

      • nifi.cluster.flow.election.max.wait.time=5 minsnifi.cluster.flow.election.max.wait.time=1 min — Changes the flow election wait time to 1 min, speeding up cluster availability

      • nifi.cluster.flow.election.max.candidates=nifi.cluster.flow.election.max.candidates=3 — Changes the flow election to occur when 3 nodes are present, speeding up cluster availability

    • $EDITOR node2.nifi/conf/nifi.properties — Opens the nifi.properties file in a text editor

    • Update the following lines:

      • nifi.cluster.flow.election.max.wait.time=5 minsnifi.cluster.flow.election.max.wait.time=1 min — Changes the flow election wait time to 1 min, speeding up cluster availability

      • nifi.cluster.flow.election.max.candidates=nifi.cluster.flow.election.max.candidates=3 — Changes the flow election to occur when 3 nodes are present, speeding up cluster availability

    • $EDITOR node3.nifi/conf/nifi.properties — Opens the nifi.properties file in a text editor

    • Update the following lines:

      • nifi.cluster.flow.election.max.wait.time=5 minsnifi.cluster.flow.election.max.wait.time=1 min — Changes the flow election wait time to 1 min, speeding up cluster availability

      • nifi.cluster.flow.election.max.candidates=nifi.cluster.flow.election.max.candidates=3 — Changes the flow election to occur when 3 nodes are present, speeding up cluster availability

  11. Start the NiFi cluster. Once all three nodes have started and joined the cluster, the flow is agreed upon and a cluster coordinator is elected, the UI is available on any of the three nodes.

    • ./node1.nifi/bin/nifi.sh start — Starts node1

    • ./node2.nifi/bin/nifi.sh start — Starts node2

    • ./node3.nifi/bin/nifi.sh start — Starts node3

  12. Wait approximately 30 seconds and open the web browser to https://node3.nifi:9443/nifi. The cluster should be available. Note that the Initial Admin Identity has no permissions on the root process group. This is an artifact of legacy design decisions where the root process group ID is not known at initial start time.

    The running cluster

    NiFi secure cluster running with no Initial Admin Identity permissions

    The cluster status from the global menu at the top right

    NiFi secure cluster status pane
  13. To update the Initial Admin Identity’s permissions for the root process group, stop each node in the cluster and remove the authorizations.xml and users.xml file from each node. These files will be regenerated when the node starts again and be populated with the correct permissions.

    • ./node1.nifi/bin/nifi.sh stop — Stops node1

    • rm node1.nifi/conf/authorizations.xml node1.nifi/conf/users.xml — Removes the authorizations.xml and users.xml for node1

    • ./node2.nifi/bin/nifi.sh stop — Stops node2

    • rm node2.nifi/conf/authorizations.xml node2.nifi/conf/users.xml — Removes the authorizations.xml and users.xml for node2

    • ./node3.nifi/bin/nifi.sh stop — Stops node3

    • rm node3.nifi/conf/authorizations.xml node3.nifi/conf/users.xml — Removes the authorizations.xml and users.xml for node3

  14. Start the nodes again.

    • ./node1.nifi/bin/nifi.sh start — Starts node1

    • ./node2.nifi/bin/nifi.sh start — Starts node2

    • ./node3.nifi/bin/nifi.sh start — Starts node3

      The running cluster with permissions

      NiFi secure cluster running with Initial Admin Identity permissions