Skip to main content
Version: 5.3

Replacing Internal Certificates

Internal Communication and Certificates

NeuVector includes default self-signed certificates for encryption for the Manager (console/UI access), Controller (REST API, internal), Enforcer (internal), and Scanner (internal) communications.

These certificates can be replaced by your own to further harden communication. For replacing certificates used by external access to NeuVector (i.e, browser to the Manager, or REST API to the Controller), please see this section. See below for replacing the certificates used in internal communication between NeuVector containers.


Replacing certificates is recommended to be performed only during initial deployment of NeuVector. Replacing on a running cluster (even with rolling upgrade) may result in an unstable state where NeuVector pods are unable to communicate with each other due to a mismatch in certificates, and DATA LOSS may occur.

Replacing Certificates Used in Internal Communications of NeuVector

Replace the internal encryption files ca.crt, tls.key, tls.crt as follows:

  • Create a new ca.cfg file with your favorite editor:
distinguished_name = req_distinguished_name
x509_extensions = v3_req
prompt = no
C = US
ST = California
L = San Jose
O = NeuVector Inc.
OU = Neuvector
CN = Neuvector
keyUsage = digitalSignature, keyEncipherment, dataEncipherment
extendedKeyUsage = serverAuth, clientAuth
subjectAltName = @alt_names
DNS.1 = Neuvector
  • Choose your scenario from the three options below:

If your certificate is about to expire and you need to generate a new one, follow the steps below:

  • Delete the old ca.crt, tls.key, tls.crt, kubernetes secret, and generate new ones:
kubectl delete secret internal-cert -n neuvector
openssl genrsa -out ca.key 2048
openssl req -x509 -sha256 -new -nodes -key ca.key -days 3650 -out ca.crt
openssl genrsa -out tls.key 2048
openssl req -new -key tls.key -sha256 -out cert.csr -config ca.cfg
openssl req -in cert.csr -noout -text
openssl x509 -req -sha256 -in cert.csr -CA ca.crt -CAkey ca.key -CAcreateserial -out tls.crt -days 3650 -extensions 'v3_req' -extfile ca.cfg
openssl x509 -in tls.crt -text
kubectl create secret generic internal-cert -n neuvector --from-file=tls.key --from-file=tls.crt --from-file=ca.crt

Then edit the Controller, Enforcer, and Scanner deployment yamls, adding:

- name: neuvector-controller/enforcer/scanner-pod
- mountPath: /etc/neuvector/certs/internal/tls.key
name: internal-cert
readOnly: true
subPath: tls.key
- mountPath: /etc/neuvector/certs/internal/tls.crt
name: internal-cert
readOnly: true
subPath: tls.crt
- mountPath: /etc/neuvector/certs/internal/ca.crt
name: internal-cert
readOnly: true
subPath: ca.crt
- name: internal-cert
defaultMode: 420
secretName: internal-cert

Then proceed to deploy NeuVector as before. You can also shell into the controller/enforcer/scanner pods to confirm that the ca.crt, tls.key, tls.crt files are the customized ones and that the NeuVector communications are working using the new certificates.

Sample patch commands for controller (change namespace to cattle-neuvector-system if needed, and modify for use on enforcer, scanner):


kubectl patch deployment -n ${NAMESPACE} neuvector-controller-pod --type='json' -p='[{"op": "add", "path": "/spec/template/spec/volumes/-", "value": {"name": "internal-cert", "secret": {"defaultMode": 420, "secretName": "internal-cert"}} } ]'

kubectl patch deployment -n ${NAMESPACE} neuvector-controller-pod --type='json' -p='[{"op": "add", "path": "/spec/template/spec/containers/0/volumeMounts", "value": [{"mountPath": "/etc/neuvector/certs/internal/cert.key", "name": "internal-cert", "readOnly": true, "subPath": "cert.key"}, {"mountPath": "/etc/neuvector/certs/internal/cert.pem", "name": "internal-cert", "readOnly": true, "subPath": "cert.pem"}, {"mountPath": "/etc/neuvector/certs/internal/ca.cert", "name": "internal-cert", "readOnly": true, "subPath": "ca.cert"} ] } ]'

Updating/Deploying with Helm

As of Helm chart 2.4.1 we can now manage the internal certificate install. The chart values.yaml should be reviewed for all the settings. The below example uses RKE2, standard Ingress and installer certificates.

# add chart
helm repo add neuvector

# update chart
helm repo update

# add domain for ingress
export domain=awesome.sauce

# run the helm
helm upgrade -i neuvector -n neuvector neuvector/core --create-namespace --set imagePullSecrets=regsecret --set k3s.enabled=true --set k3s.runtimePath=/run/k3s/containerd/containerd.sock --set manager.ingress.enabled=true --set$domain --set manager.svc.type=ClusterIP --set controller.pvc.enabled=true --set controller.pvc.capacity=500Mi --set controller.internal.certificate.secret=internal-cert --set cve.scanner.internal.certificate.secret=internal-cert --set enforcer.internal.certificate.secret=internal-cert