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Hostname verification with SSL on Open Liberty 19.0.0.6 and MicroProfile Rest Client 1.3 preview

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Laura Cowen on Jun 21, 2019

Enhance the security of your app communications by enabling hostname verification on your SSL configurations. SSL ensures that data being transferred between apps is protected and only the intended applications can read it. The new hostname verification attribute provides additional protection by enabling the recipient of the data to verify the source of the data. Give it a try in Open Liberty 19.0.0.6.

If you’re curious about what’s coming in future Open Liberty releases, take a look at our previews in the latest development builds. In particular, we have an early implementation of MicroProfile Rest Client 1.3, which is part of the new MicroProfile 3.0 spec.

Run your apps using 19.0.0.6

If you’re using Maven, here are the coordinates:

<dependency>
    <groupId>io.openliberty</groupId>
    <artifactId>openliberty-runtime</artifactId>
    <version>19.0.0.6</version>
    <type>zip</type>
</dependency>

Or for Gradle:

dependencies {
    libertyRuntime group: 'io.openliberty', name: 'openliberty-runtime', version: '[19.0.0.6,)'
}

Or if you’re using Docker:

docker pull open-liberty

Or take a look at our Downloads page.

Ask a question on Stack Overflow

Hostname verification on SSL configuration

Hostname verification is a server identity check that is used to ensure that a client is talking to the correct server. The check is performed on the client side of an SSL communication and involves looking at the server’s certificate Subject Alternative Name (or the SubjectDN) to see if it matches the host part of the URL that was used to make the outbound request.

Hostname verification should be used to help protect against man-in-the-middle security vulnerability attacks. With Open Liberty, you can enable this on an SSL configuration.

Enable hostname verification on an SSL configuration by adding the verifyHostname attribute to a SSL configuration:

<ssl id="defaultSSLConfig" keyStoreRef="keyStore" verifyHostname="true" />
<keyStore id="keyStore" location="${server.config.dir}/key.p12" type="PKCS12" password="liberty" />

With this configuration, any outbound SSL connection using defaultSSLConfig undergoes a hostname verification check by the JDK. The check takes place in the trust manager by looking at the server certificate’s Subject Alternative Name information to get valid hostnames and then looking for a match to the hostname in the URL used to make the outbound connection. If there is no hostname match the SSL handshake fails. The hostname can be acquired from the server certificate’s SubjectDN if the Subject Alternative Name is missing.

Previews of early implementations available in beta status

You can now also try out early implementations of some new capabilities in the latest Open Liberty development builds:

These early implementations are not available in 19.0.0.6 but you can try them out by downloading the latest Open Liberty development build. Let us know what you think!

Improved portability and developer experience (MicroProfile Rest Client 1.3)

MicroProfile Rest Client 1.3 improves portability and developer experience:

  • HTTPS configuration is now part of the spec, so SSL stores and certificate-based authentication are now portable across multiple MicroProfile Rest Client vendors.

  • Rest Client interface instances now implement AutoCloseable allowing developers to better control resource utilization.

  • Config Keys simplify configuration of multiple client interfaces. For example, suppose you have three client interfaces that all use the same base URI:

    @RegisterRestClient(configKey="myKey")
    @Path("/path1")
    public interface ClientInterface1 { ... }
    
    @RegisterRestClient(configKey="myKey")
    @Path("/path2")
    public interface ClientInterface2 { ... }
    
    @RegisterRestClient(configKey="myKey")
    @Path("/path3")
    public interface ClientInterface3 { ... }

    All it takes to set the base URI for all three clients is this MicroProfile Config property: myKey/mp-rest/uri=http://somehost:9080/contextRoot

  • MicroProfile Rest Client 1.3 defaults the MIME type to application/json if it is left unspecified; in previous releases, it was undefined which MIME type would be used. If you are not using JSON, it might be a good idea to ensure your client interfaces specify the MIME types for request/response using the @Consumes/@Produces annotations respectively.

Learn more about MP Rest Client 1.3.

Support for PostgreSQL relational database

PostgreSQL is a very popular open source relational database that has a wide amount of adoption in the community. Now there is a first-class configuration support for using it with Open Liberty.

To use PostgreSQL with Open Liberty, first make sure one of the JDBC features is enabled:

<featureManager>
    <feature>jdbc-4.2</feature>
    <feature>jndi-1.0</feature> <!-- Required only if JNDI is desired to look up resources -->
</featureManager>

Then, configure a data source as follows:

<dataSource jndiName="jdbc/postgresql">
  <jdbcDriver libraryRef="PostgresLib" />
  <properties.postgresql serverName="localhost" portNumber="5432" databaseName="SAMPLEDB"
                         user="bob" password="secret"/>
</dataSource>

<library id="PostgresLib">
    <fileset dir="${server.config.dir}/jdbc"/>
</library>

Get the JDBC driver for PostgreSQL from Maven Central.

Get the Postgres Docker images from DockerHub.

For more about PostgreSQL, see PostgreSQL website.

Testing database connections in Liberty apps with REST APIs

How many times have you had to write a server-side test that gets a connection just to check if your configuration is valid and your app can connect to your database? Now by utilizing the REST API provided by the configValidator-1.0 beta feature, you can validate supported elements of your configuration via REST endpoints.

To enable these REST endpoints, add the configValidator-1.0 beta feature to any server using JDBC, JCA, or JMS technologies. For more information checkout this blog post.

<featureManager>
    <feature>configValidator-1.0</feature>
</featureManager>

MicroProfile Context Propagation 1.0 (formerly MicroProfile Concurrency 1.0)

MicroProfile Context Propagation (formerly MicroProfile Concurrency) allows you to create completion stages that run with predictable thread context regardless of which thread the completion stage action ends up running on.

MicroProfile Context Propagation provides completion stages that run with predictable thread context that also benefit from being backed by the automatically-tuned Liberty global thread pool. Configuration of concurrency constraints and context propagation is possible programmatically with fluent builder API where defaults can be established using MicroProfile Config.

To enable the MicroProfile Context Propagation 1.0 feature in your server.xml:

<featureManager>
    <feature>mpContextPropagation-1.0</feature>
    <feature>cdi-2.0</feature> <!-- used in example -->
    <feature>jndi-1.0</feature> <!-- used in example -->
    ... other features
</featureManager>

Example usage of programmatic builders:

ManagedExecutor executor = ManagedExecutor.builder()
    .maxAsync(5)
    .propagated(ThreadContext.APPLICATION, ThreadContext.SECURITY)
    .build();

CompletableFuture<Integer> stage1 = executor.newIncompleteFuture();
stage1.thenApply(function1).thenAccept(value -> {
    try {
        // access resource reference in application's java:comp namespace,
        DataSource ds = InitialContext.doLookup("java:comp/env/jdbc/ds1");
        ...
    } catch (Exception x) {
        throw new CompletionException(x);
    }
};
...
stage1.complete(result);

Example usage in a CDI bean:

// CDI qualifier which is used to identify the executor instance
@Qualifier
@Retention(RetentionPolicy.RUNTIME)
@Target({ ElementType.FIELD, ElementType.METHOD, ElementType.PARAMETER })
public @interface AppContext {}

// Example producer field, defined in a CDI bean,
@Produces @ApplicationScoped @AppContext
ManagedExecutor appContextExecutor = ManagedExecutor.builder()
    .propagated(ThreadContext.APPLICATION)
    .build();

// Example disposer method, also defined in the CDI bean,
void disposeExecutor(@Disposes @AppContext exec) {
    exec.shutdownNow();
}

// Example injection point, defined in a CDI bean,
@Inject @AppContext
ManagedExecutor executor;

...

CompletableFuture<Integer> stage = executor
    .supplyAsync(supplier1)
    .thenApply(function1)
    .thenApplyAsync(value -> {
        try {
            // access resource reference in application's java:comp namespace,
            DataSource ds = InitialContext.doLookup("java:comp/env/jdbc/ds1");
            ...
            return result;
        } catch (Exception x) {
            throw new CompletionException(x);
        }
    });

For more information:

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