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There are three levels of control when REST requests are issued:

  • Web access
  • JCR access
  • Command-level access

Permissions to issue REST requests are controlled using Magnolia's standard role-based security mechanism.

Security strategy

REST endpoints are a powerful tool but can also make your site very vulnerable. Make sure you understand how to implement a strong security strategy to safeguard your system.

Web access security

Web access security is checked by the URISecurityFilter. The filter checks whether the role(s) of the requesting user allow to the user to request a given path with given method.

Web permissions are granted as web access lists per role. They grant access to a path for Get or Get & Post

  • Get – Grants the HTTP method GET for a given URI.
  • Get & Post – Grants the HTTP methods GETPUTPOST and DELETE for a given URI.

Web access is checked for every endpoint.

JCR access security

JCR access security is a feature of the JCR standard (defined by JCR JSR-170 and JSR-283). JCR access is granted per workspace on path level. It can grant Read-only or Read/Write permission. Grant JCR access lists per role.

When using endpoints dealing with JCR repositories (nodes and properties to read and write, delivery to read only) the user must have an appropriate role that provides JCR permissions for the given method.

JCR access security is checked on every endpoint that reads or writes JCR data.

JCR access security can be bypassed for the delivery endpoint for testing purposes.

Role-based security for commands

Command level security access only applies to the commands endpoint. 

Role-based access to specific commands are configured in the rest-services module: /modules/rest-services/rest-endpoints/commands/enabledCommands/ 

Commands are custom actions executed at pre-defined trigger points. Magnolia uses commands to activate content, send email, flush the cache, take backups, import and export data, and to do many other tasks. Commands can perform duties within the system or connect to external resources.

Security for endpoints - summary

Endpoints always require URI access, they may also require JCR access or a specific role defined at a command level.

When you request a REST URL, URI security is checked first:

  • If the URI security check fails, the request is redirected to the login page by default.
  • If the the URI security check is passed, the request is delegated to the endpoint in question.

If the endpoint concerns JCR access, JCR access security is checked too:

  • If the user is not granted access to the requested node, the endpoint responds with an HTTP error.
  • If JCR security access is granted, the endpoint responds with an HTTP response code 200 and a response body if appropriate.

If the endpoint triggers commands, the command definition grants access via specifically defined roles defined per command:


HTTP
method
Web access security required

JCR access security


Specific role based security

delivery GET

/.rest/delivery/*

Read-only access for the delivery API path-
nodes GET

/.rest/nodes/v1/{workspace}/{path}

Read-only access for a path on a workspace-
PUT

/.rest/nodes/v1/{workspace}/{path}

Read/Write access for a path on a workspace-
POST

/.rest/nodes/v1/{workspace}/{path}

Read/Write access for a path on a workspace-
DELETE/.rest/nodes/v1/{workspace}/{path}Read/Write access for a path on a workspace-
properties GET/.rest/nodes/v1/{workspace}/{path}Read-only access for a path on a workspace-
PUT/.rest/nodes/v1/{workspace}/{path}Read/Write access for a path on a workspace-
POST/.rest/nodes/v1/{workspace}/{path}Read/Write access for a path on a workspace-
DELETE/.rest/nodes/v1/{workspace}/{path}Read/Write access for a path on a workspace-
commands POST/.rest/commands/v2/{catalogName}/{command}-required

REST roles

The REST module installs four default roles with the following permissions:

  • rest-admin – The REST administrator role grants GET/POST permissions to all Magnolia's REST APIs.
  • rest-editor – The REST editor role grants GET/POST permissions to REST services APIs (nodes, properties), for a limited set of workspaces.
  • rest-anonymous – The REST anonymous consumer role grants GET permissions to Magnolia's content delivery REST API.
  • rest-backup – The REST backup role grants permission to execute the backup command from a running Magnolia instance.

rest-admin

Web access

Permission

Path

Get & Post

/.rest/*

Configured access

Applies to

Name

Path

Commands

Delete

/modules/rest-services/rest-endpoints/commands/enabledCommands/markAsDeleted/access/roles


Activate

/modules/rest-services/rest-endpoints/commands/enabledCommands/activate/access/roles

rest-editor

Web access

Permission

Path

Deny

/.rest*

Get/.rest/delivery/*

Deny

/.rest/commands*

Deny

/.rest/nodes*

Get & Post

/.rest/nodes/v1/website*

Deny

/.rest/properties*

Get & Post

/.rest/properties/v1/website*

Get & Post

/.rest/cache/v1*

rest-anonymous

Web access

Permission

Path

Deny

/.rest*

Get

/.rest/delivery/*

rest-backup

Web access

Permission

Path

Get & Post

/.rest/commands/v2/backup/backup

Configured access

Applies to

Name

Path

Command

Backup

/modules/rest-services/rest-endpoints/commands/enabledCommands/backup/access/roles

The superuser account has the rest-admin role by default so you can use superuser to test your requests. However, for production use, you should create a custom REST role. The anonymous role is specifically denied access to the REST endpoints.

Custom REST roles

Magnolia recommends you create custom REST roles granting specific access for specific use cases.

The custom roles you create depend on your individual project requirements. In general, we recommend you:

  • First deny everything, then specifically grant only what is required.
  • Avoid granting write permissions on JCR workspaces for anonymous users.
  • Create different roles for each use case.


4 Comments

  1. What about other Request Methods such as OPTIONS? I found that seems to be no way to get an OPTIONS request through the security chain. And no OPTIONS Request = no CORS

    1. Hi

      What exactly do you want to do? Cross-origin resource sharing?
      You could do this with a filter, see Filters#AddingHTTPheaders

      1. Christoph Meier  i want to controll the entire process in my custom REST Endpoint. The problem is that the REST Security system only allows to differentiate between GET, PUT, POST & DELETE. But in order to controll the CORS headers, i must be able to receive requests with the OPTIONS method as well. Putting the CORS headers into every response is no viable option for me...

        As i said the only hard limitation here is that the REST Security doesn't allow OPTIONS requests, otherwise this would be working perfectly fine.

        1. Putting the CORS headers into every response is no viable option for me...

          This should be easy avoidable with a bypass rule on the filter.

          However ...  I recommend you to discuss the topic in the the google discussion group(s), see

          There you will have a bigger audience of more experienced people.