Security services

For authentication and authorization of clients, the Shared File Systems Storage service can optionally be configured with different network authentication protocols. Supported authentication protocols are LDAP, Kerberos, and Microsoft Active directory authentication service.

Introduction to security services

After creating a share and getting its export location, users have no permissions to mount it and operate with files. The Shared File System service requires to explicitly grant access to the new share.

The client configuration data for authentication and authorization (AuthN/AuthZ) can be stored by security services. LDAP, Kerberos, or Microsoft Active directory can be used by the Shared File Systems service if they are supported by used drivers and back ends. Authentication services can also be configured without the Shared File Systems service.


In some cases, it is required to explicitly specify one of the security services, for example, NetApp, EMC and Windows drivers require Active Directory for the creation of shares with the CIFS protocol.

Security services management

A security service is the Shared File Systems service (manila) entity that abstracts a set of options that defines a security domain for a particular shared file system protocol, such as an Active Directory domain or a Kerberos domain. The security service contains all of the information necessary for the Shared File Systems to create a server that joins a given domain.

Using the API, users can create, update, view and delete a security service. Security Services are designed basing on the following assumptions:

  • Tenants provide details for the security service.

  • Administrators care about security services: they configure the server side of such security services.

  • Inside The Shared File Systems API, a security_service is associated with the share_networks.

  • Share drivers use data in the security service to configure newly created share servers.

While creating a security service, you can select one of these authentication services:

Authentication service



The Lightweight Directory Access Protocol. An application protocol for accessing and maintaining distributed directory information services over an IP network.


The network authentication protocol which works on the basis of tickets to allow nodes communicating over a non-secure network to prove their identity to one another in a secure manner.

Active Directory

A directory service that Microsoft developed for Windows domain networks. Uses LDAP, Microsoft’s version of Kerberos, and DNS.

The Shared File Systems service allows you to configure a security service with these options:

  • A DNS IP address that is used inside the tenant network.

  • An IP address or host name of a security service.

  • A domain of a security service.

  • A user or group name that is used by a tenant.

  • A password for a user, if you specify a user name.

An existing security service entity can be associated with share network entities that inform the Shared File Systems service about security and network configuration for a group of shares. You can also see the list of all security services for a specified share network and disassociate them from a share network.

For details of managing security services via API, see the Security services API. You also can manage security services via python-manilaclient, see Security services CLI managing.

An administrator and users as share owners can manage the access to the shares by creating access rules with authentication though an IP address, user, group, or TLS certificates. Authentication methods depend on which share driver and security service you configure and use.

Thus, as an administrator, you can configure a back end to use specific authentication service via network and it will store users. The authentication service can operate with clients without the Shared File System and the Identity service.


Different authentication services are supported by different share drivers. For details of supporting of features by different drivers, see Manila share features support mapping. Support for a specific authentication service by a driver does not mean that it can be configured with any shared file system protocol. Supported shared file systems protocols are NFS, CIFS, GlusterFS, and HDFS. See the driver vendor’s documentation for information on a specific driver and its configuration for security services.

Some drivers support security services and other drivers do not support any of the security services mentioned above. For example, Generic Driver with the NFS or the CIFS shared file system protocol supports only authentication method through the IP address.


  • Those drivers that support the CIFS shared file system protocol in most cases can be configured to use Active Directory and manage access through the user authentication.

  • Drivers that support the GlusterFS protocol can be used with authentication via TLS certificates.

  • With drivers that support NFS protocol authentication via IP address is the only supported option.

  • Since the HDFS shared file system protocol uses NFS access it also can be configured to authenticate via IP address.

Note, however, that authentication via IP is the least secure type of authentication.

The recommended configuration for the Shared File Systems service real usage is to create a share with the CIFS share protocol and add to it the Microsoft Active Directory directory service. In this configuration you will get the centralized data base and the service that unites Kerberos and LDAP approaches. This is a real use case that is convenient for production shared file systems.