Navigation

Use x.509 Certificate for Membership Authentication

New in version 2.6.

MongoDB supports x.509 certificate authentication for use with a secure TLS/SSL connection. Sharded cluster members and replica set members can use x.509 certificates to verify their membership to the cluster or the replica set instead of using keyfiles. The membership authentication is an internal process.

Note

Starting in version 4.0, MongoDB disables support for TLS 1.0 encryption on systems where TLS 1.1+ is available. For more details, see Disable TLS 1.0.

Enabling internal authentication also enables Role-Based Access Control. Clients must authenticate as a user in order to connect and perform operations in the deployment.

Important

A full description of TLS/SSL, PKI (Public Key Infrastructure) certificates, in particular x.509 certificates, and Certificate Authority is beyond the scope of this document. This tutorial assumes prior knowledge of TLS/SSL as well as access to valid x.509 certificates.

Member x.509 Certificate

Note

You must have valid x.509 certificates.

Starting in MongoDB 4.0, if you specify --sslAllowInvalidCertificates or net.ssl.allowInvalidCertificates: true (or in MongoDB 4.2, the alias --tlsAllowInvalidateCertificates or net.tls.allowInvalidCertificates: true) when using x.509 authentication, an invalid certificate is only sufficient to establish a TLS/SSL connection but is insufficient for authentication.

Certificate Requirements

The member certificate (net.tls.clusterFile, if specified, and net.tls.certificateKeyFile), used to verify membership to the sharded cluster or a replica set, must have the following properties:

  • A single Certificate Authority (CA) must issue all the x.509 certificates for the members of a sharded cluster or a replica set.

  • The Distinguished Name (DN), found in the member certificate’s subject, must specify a non-empty value for at least one of the following attributes: Organization (O), the Organizational Unit (OU) or the Domain Component (DC).

  • The Organization attributes (O’s), the Organizational Unit attributes (OU’s), and the Domain Components (DC’s) must match those from the certificates for the other cluster members (or the tlsX509ClusterAuthDNOverride value, if set).

    To match, the certificate must match all specifications of these attributes, or even the non-specification of these attributes. The order of the attributes does not matter.

    In the following example, the two DN’s contain matching specifications for O, OU as well as the non-specification of the DC attribute.

    CN=host1,OU=Dept1,O=MongoDB,ST=NY,C=US
    C=US, ST=CA, O=MongoDB, OU=Dept1, CN=host2
    

    However, the following two DN’s contain a mismatch for the OU attribute since one contains two OU specifications and the other, only one specification.

    CN=host1,OU=Dept1,OU=Sales,O=MongoDB
    CN=host2,OU=Dept1,O=MongoDB
    
  • Either the Common Name (CN) or one of the Subject Alternative Name (SAN) entries must match the hostname of the server, used by the other members of the cluster. Starting in MongoDB 4.2, when performing comparison of SAN, MongoDB supports comparison of DNS names or IP addresses. In previous versions, MongoDB only supports comparisons of DNS names.

    For example, the certificates for a cluster could have the following subjects:

    subject= CN=<myhostname1>,OU=Dept1,O=MongoDB,ST=NY,C=US
    subject= CN=<myhostname2>,OU=Dept1,O=MongoDB,ST=NY,C=US
    subject= CN=<myhostname3>,OU=Dept1,O=MongoDB,ST=NY,C=US
    
  • If the certificate includes the Extended Key Usage (extendedKeyUsage) setting, the value must include clientAuth (“TLS Web Client Authentication”).

    extendedKeyUsage = clientAuth
    

    You can also use a certificate that does not include the Extended Key Usage (EKU).

Configure Replica Set/Sharded Cluster

Outside of rolling upgrade procedures, every component of a replica set or sharded cluster should use the same --clusterAuthMode setting to ensure it can securely connect to all other components in the deployment.

For replica set deployments, this includes all mongod members of the replica set.

For sharded cluster deployments, this includes all mongod or mongos instances.

Note

Starting in MongoDB 3.6, mongod and mongos bind to localhost by default. If the members of your deployment are run on different hosts or if you wish remote clients to connect to your deployment, you must specify --bind_ip or net.bindIp. For more information, see Localhost Binding Compatibility Changes.

Use Command-line Options (tls)

Note

The procedures in this section use the ssl settings/option. For procedures using their tls aliases (Available in MongoDB 4.2), see Use Command-line Options (tls).

The tls settings/options provide identical functionality as the ssl options since MongoDB has always supported TLS 1.0 and later.

mongod --replSet <name> --tlsMode requireTLS --clusterAuthMode x509 --tlsClusterFile <path to membership certificate and key PEM file> --tlsCertificateKeyFile <path to TLS/SSL certificate and key file> --sslCAFile <path to root CA file> --bind_ip localhost,<hostname(s)|ip address(es)>

Important

To use x.509 authentication, --tlsCAFile or net.tls.CAFile must be specified unless using --tlsCertificateSelector or --net.tls.certificateSelector. Or if using the ssl aliases, --sslCAFile or net.ssl.CAFile must be specified unless using --sslCertificateSelector or net.ssl.certificateSelector.

Include any additional options, TLS/SSL or otherwise, that are required for your specific configuration. For

security:
   clusterAuthMode: x509
net:
   tls:
      mode: requireSSL
      certificateKeyFile: <path to its TLS/SSL certificate and key file>
      CAFile: <path to root CA PEM file to verify received certificate>
      clusterFile: <path to its certificate key file for membership authentication>
   bindIp: localhost,<hostname(s)|ip address(es)>

Important

To use x.509 authentication, --tlsCAFile or net.tls.CAFile must be specified unless using --tlsCertificateSelector or --net.tls.certificateSelector. Or if using the ssl aliases, --sslCAFile or net.ssl.CAFile must be specified unless using --sslCertificateSelector or net.ssl.certificateSelector.

Include any additional options, TLS/SSL or otherwise, that are required for your specific configuration.

For more information, see Configure mongod and mongos for TLS/SSL.

Use Command-line Options (ssl)

Note

The procedures in this section use the ssl settings/option. For procedures using their tls aliases (Available in MongoDB 4.2), see Use Command-line Options (tls).

The tls settings/options provide identical functionality as the ssl options since MongoDB has always supported TLS 1.0 and later.

To specify the x.509 certificate for internal cluster member authentication, append the additional TLS/SSL options --clusterAuthMode and --sslClusterFile, as in the following example for a member of a replica set:

mongod --replSet <name> --sslMode requireSSL --clusterAuthMode x509 --sslClusterFile <path to membership certificate and key PEM file> --sslPEMKeyFile <path to TLS/SSL certificate and key PEM file> --sslCAFile <path to root CA PEM file> --bind_ip localhost,<hostname(s)|ip address(es)>

Important

To use x.509 authentication, --tlsCAFile or net.tls.CAFile must be specified unless using --tlsCertificateSelector or --net.tls.certificateSelector. Or if using the ssl aliases, --sslCAFile or net.ssl.CAFile must be specified unless using --sslCertificateSelector or net.ssl.certificateSelector.

Include any additional options, TLS/SSL or otherwise, that are required for your specific configuration.

security:
   clusterAuthMode: x509
net:
   ssl:
      mode: requireSSL
      PEMKeyFile: <path to TLS/SSL certificate and key PEM file>
      CAFile: <path to root CA PEM file>
      clusterFile: <path to x.509 membership certificate and key PEM file>
   bindIp: localhost,<hostname(s)|ip address(es)>

Important

To use x.509 authentication, --tlsCAFile or net.tls.CAFile must be specified unless using --tlsCertificateSelector or --net.tls.certificateSelector. Or if using the ssl aliases, --sslCAFile or net.ssl.CAFile must be specified unless using --sslCertificateSelector or net.ssl.certificateSelector.

Include any additional options, TLS/SSL or otherwise, that are required for your specific configuration.

For more information, see Configure mongod and mongos for TLS/SSL.

Additional Information

To upgrade from keyfile internal authentication to x.509 internal authentication, see Upgrade from Keyfile Authentication to x.509 Authentication.

To perform a rolling update of the certificates to new certificates with different DN, see Rolling Update of x.509 Cluster Certificates that Contain New DN.