Security Hardening

TripleO can deploy Overcloud nodes with various Security Hardening values passed in as environment files to the openstack overcloud deploy command.

Horizon Password Validation

Horizon provides a password validation check which OpenStack cloud operators can use to enforce password complexity.

Regular expression can be used for password validation with help text to display if the users password does not adhere with validation checks.

The following example will enforce users to create a password between 8 and 18 characters in length:

  HorizonPasswordValidator: '^.{8,18}$'
  HorizonPasswordValidatorHelp: 'Password must be between 8 and 18 characters.'

If the above yaml was saved as horizon_password.yaml we can then pass this into the overcloud deploy command as follows:

openstack overcloud deploy --templates -e  horizon_password.yaml

Default Security Values in Horzion

The following config directives are set to True as a secure default, however if a reason exists for an operator to disable one of the following values, they can do so using an enviroment file.


The following directives should only be set to False once the potential security impacts are fully understood.

Enforce Password Check

By setting ENFORCE_PASSWORD_CHECK to True within Horizon’s, it displays an ‘Admin Password’ field on the “Change Password” form to verify that it is the admin loggedin that wants to perform the password change.

If a need is present to disable ENFORCE_PASSWORD_CHECK then this can be achieved using an environment file contain the following parameter:

    horizon::enforce_password_check: false

Disallow Iframe Embed

DISALLOW_IFRAME_EMBED can be used to prevent Horizon from being embedded within an iframe. Legacy browsers are still vulnerable to a Cross-Frame Scripting (XFS) vulnerability, so this option allows extra security hardening where iframes are not used in deployment.

If however a reason exists to allow Iframe embedding, then the following parameter can be set within an enviroment file:

    horizon::disallow_iframe_embed: false

Disable Password Reveal

In the same way as ENFORCE_PASSWORD_CHECK and DISALLOW_IFRAME_EMBED the DISABLE_PASSWORD_REVEAL value to be toggled as a parameter:

    horizon::disable_password_reveal: false

SSH Banner Text

SSH /etc/issue Banner text can be set using the following parameters in an enviroment file:

  OS::TripleO::Services::Sshd: ../puppet/services/sshd.yaml

  BannerText: |
    * This system is for the use of authorized users only. Usage of  *
    * this system may be monitored and recorded by system personnel. *
    * Anyone using this system expressly consents to such monitoring *
    * and is advised that if such monitoring reveals possible        *
    * evidence of criminal activity, system personnel may provide    *
    * the evidence from such monitoring to law enforcement officials.*

As with the previous Horizon Password Validation example, saving the above into a yaml file, will allow passing the aforementioned parameters into the overcloud deploy command:

openstack overcloud deploy --templates -e  ssh_banner.yaml


Having a system capable of recording all audit events is key for troubleshooting and peforming analysis of events that led to a certain outcome. The audit system is capable of logging many events such as someone changing the system time, changes to Mandatory / Discretionary Access Control, creating / destroying users or groups.

Rules can be declared using an enviroment file and injected into /etc/audit/audit.rules:

    'Record Events that Modify User/Group Information':
      content: '-w /etc/group -p wa -k audit_rules_usergroup_modification'
      order  : 1
    'Collects System Administrator Actions':
      content: '-w /etc/sudoers -p wa -k actions'
      order  : 2
    'Record Events that Modify the Systems Mandatory Access Controls':
      content: '-w /etc/selinux/ -p wa -k MAC-policy'
      order  : 3