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Enabling Java Security Manager

Please note that this document is currently under review. Currently, WSO2 does not recommend Java security manager for production environments due to some known issues.

The Java Security Manager is used to define various security policies that prevent untrusted code from manipulating your system. Enabling the Java Security Manager for WSO2 products activates the Java permissions that are in the <PRODUCT_HOME>/repository/conf/sec.policy file. You modify this file to change the Java security permissions as required.

Before you begin

  • Ensure that you have Java 1.8 installed.
  • Note that you need to use a keystore for signing JARs using the Java security manager. In this example, you will be using the default keystore in your WSO2 product (wso2carbon.jks). You can read about the recommendations for using keystores from here.

The steps below show how to enable the Java Security Manager for WSO2 products.

  1. Download the WSO2 product to any location (e.g., <HOME>/user/<product-pack> folder).

  2. To sign the JARs in your product, you need a key. You can generate a new keystore (with a new key) by executing the keytool command given below. Note that the new keystore is created in the directory from which you execute the keytool command.

    keytool -genkey -alias signFiles -keyalg RSA -keystore signkeystore.jks -validity 3650 -dname "CN=Sanjeewa,OU=Engineering, O=WSO2, L=Colombo, ST=Western, C=LK"
    Enter keystore password:  
    Re-enter new password:
    Enter key password for
    (RETURN if same as keystore password)

    Now you have a new keystore (signkeystore.jks) with a new public key certificate (signFiles). 

  3. By default, WSO2 products use the default wso2carbon.jks keystore for signing JARs. This keystore is stored in the <PRODUCT_HOME>/repository/resources/security directory. Therefore, you need to add the signFiles public key certificate that you created earlier into the wso2carbon.jks keystore. 

    First, export the signFiles public key certificate from the signkeystore.jks keystore by executing the following command:

    $ keytool -export -keystore signkeystore.jks -alias signFiles -file sign-cert.cer 

    Then, import the same signFiles certificate to the wso2carbon.jks keystore by executing the command given below. Be sure to specify the correct directory path to the wso2carbon.jks file of your product.

    $ keytool -import -alias signFiles -file sign-cert.cer -keystore <PATH_to_PRODUCT_HOME>/repository/resources/security/wso2carbon.jks
        Enter keystore password:  
        Owner: CN=Sanjeewa, OU=Engineering, O=WSO2, L=Colombo, ST=Western, C=LK
        Issuer: CN=Sanjeewa, OU=Engineering, O=WSO2, L=Colombo, ST=Western, C=LK
        Serial number: 5486f3b0
        Valid from: Tue Dec 09 18:35:52 IST 2014 until: Fri Dec 06 18:35:52 IST 2024
        Certificate fingerprints:
        MD5:  54:13:FD:06:6F:C9:A6:BC:EE:DF:73:A9:88:CC:02:EC
        SHA1: AE:37:2A:9E:66:86:12:68:28:88:12:A0:85:50:B1:D1:21:BD:49:52
        Signature algorithm name: SHA1withRSA
        Version: 3
        Trust this certificate? [no]:  yes
        Certificate was added to keystore

    Note that WSO2 no longer recommends MD5 for JAR signing due to cryptographic limitations. 

  4. Open the security policy file, and update the "grant signedBy" value in the with the new signFiles alias key, as shown below. 

    grant signedBy "signFiles" {
      // permission java.util.PropertyPermission "*", "read";
      // permission java.lang.RuntimePermission "*", "*";
      // permission "*", "*";
  5. Prepare the scripts to sign the JARs and grant them the required permission. For example, the script given below can be used to sign each JAR file separately or you can use the script, which runs a loop to read all JARs and sign them. script
        set -e
        signjar="$JAVA_HOME/bin/jarsigner -keystore $keystore_file -storepass $keystore_storepass -keypass $keystore_keypass"
        verifyjar="$JAVA_HOME/bin/jarsigner -keystore $keystore_file -verify"
        echo "Signing $jarfile"
        $signjar $jarfile $keystore_keyalias
        echo "Verifying $jarfile"
        $verifyjar $jarfile
        # Check whether the verification is successful.
        if [ $? -eq 1 ]
           echo "Verification failed for $jarfile"
        fi script
        if [[ ! -d $1 ]]; then
           echo "Please specify a target directory"
           exit 1
        for jarfile in `find . -type f -iname \*.jar`
          ./ $jarfile
  6. Execute the following commands to sign the JARs in your product:

    ./ /HOME/user/<product-pack>

    Every time you add an external JAR to the WSO2 product, sign them manually using the above instructions for the Java Security Manager to be effective. You add external JARs to the server when extending the product, applying patches etc. 

  7. Open the startup script in the <PRODUCT_HOME>/bin folder. For Linux, it is
  8. Add the following system properties to the startup script and save the file: \$CARBON_HOME/repository/conf/sec.policy \
    -Drestricted.packages=sun.,,com.sun.xml.internal.bind.,com.sun.imageio.,org.wso2.carbon. \,, \
  9. Create a sec.policy file with the required security policies in the <PRODUCT_HOME>/repository/conf folder and start the server. Starting the server makes the Java permissions defined in the sec.policy file to take effect. 

    An example of a sec.policy file is given below. It includes mostly WSO2 Carbon-level permissions.

    grant {
        // Allow socket connections for any host
        permission "*:1-65535", "connect,resolve";
        // Allow to read all properties. Use in to restrict properties
        permission java.util.PropertyPermission "*", "read";
        permission java.lang.RuntimePermission "getClassLoader";
        // CarbonContext APIs require this permission
        permission "control";
        // Required by any component reading XMLs. For example: org.wso2.carbon.databridge.agent.thrift:4.2.1.
        permission java.lang.RuntimePermission "";
        // Required by org.wso2.carbon.ndatasource.core:4.2.0. This is only necessary after adding above permission. 
        permission java.lang.RuntimePermission "";