Administrative security

Administrative security determines whether security is used at all, the type of registry against which authentication takes place, and other values, many of which act as defaults. Proper planning is required because incorrectly enabling admin security can lock you out of the admin console or cause the server to end abnormally.

Administrative security can be thought of as a "big switch" that activates a wide variety of security settings for WAS. Values for these settings can be specified, but they will not take effect until administrative security is activated. The settings include the authentication of users, the use of SSL, and the choice of user account repository. In particular, application security, including authentication and role-based authorization, is not enforced unless admin security is active. Administrative security is enabled by default.

Administrative security represents the security configuration that is effective for the entire security domain. A security domain consists of all of the servers that are configured with the same user registry realm name. In some cases, the realm can be the machine name of a local operating system registry. In this case, all of the application servers must reside on the same physical machine. In other cases, the realm can be the machine name of a standalone LDAP registry.

A multiple node configuration is supported because we can access remotely user registries that support the LDAP protocol. Therefore, we can enable authentication from anywhere.

The basic requirement for a security domain is that the access ID that is returned by the registry or repository from one server within the security domain is the same access ID as that returned from the registry or repository on any other server within the same security domain. The access ID is the unique identification of a user and is used during authorization to determine if access is permitted to the resource.

The administrative security configuration applies to every server within the security domain.


Why turn on admin security?

Turning on administrative security activates the settings that protect the server from unauthorized users. Administrative security is enabled by default during the profile creation time. There might be some environments where no security is needed such as a development system. On these systems we can elect to disable admin security. However, in most environments you should keep unauthorized users from accessing the admin console and the business applications. Administrative security must be enabled to restrict access.


What does admin security protect?

The configuration of admin security for a security domain involves configuring the following technologies:

IBM recommends that before registering a node with an administrative agent process, that you first have admin security enabled in the administrative agent and base profile. Once you register a profile with the administrative agent, the state of admin security enablement cannot be changed.


Related tasks

Enable security



Security considerations when adding a base Application Server node to ND