vSphere Integrated Containers Security Reference

The Security Reference provides information to allow you to secure your vSphere Integrated Containers implementation.

Network Security

VMware highly recommends using a secure management network for vSphere Integrated Containers Engine. The container VMs communicate with the endpoint VM over the management network when an interactive shell is required. While the communication is encrypted, the public keys are not validated, which leaves scope for man-in-the-middle attacks. This connection is only used for the interactive console when enabled (stdin/out/err), and not for any other purpose.

External Interfaces, Ports, and Services

The following ports must be open on the VCH appliance.

Endpoint VM

Client interface:

  • 2375 insecure port for Docker API access if deployed with --no-tls
  • 2376 for TLS secured port for Docker API access
  • 22 SSH when enabled with vic-machine debug
  • 2378 VIC admin server health and log access (HTTPS)
  • 6060 pprof debug data when enabled with --debug levels

Management interface:

  • 2377 incoming connections from container VMs
  • 443 outgoing connections established to vSphere target
  • 443 outgoing connections established to ESX hosts

Bridge interface:

  • 53 DNS server for container name resolution

Public interface:

  • any port not listed as used elsewhere can be forwarded to a container VM

Container VM

  • 6060 pprof debug data when enabled with --debug levels
  • vSphere Integrated Containers Engine does not use ports when not configured for debug

Service Accounts and Privileges

vSphere Integrated Containers Engine does not create service accounts and does not assign privileges. The --ops-user and --ops-password options allow a VCH to operate with less-privileged credentials than those that are required for deploying a new VCH. For information about the --ops-user option and the permissions that it requires, see the descriptions of --ops-user in VCH Deployment Options and Advanced Examples of Deploying a VCH, and the section Use Different User Accounts for VCH Deployment and Operation.

Apply Security Updates and Patches

Download a new version of vSphere Integrated Containers Engine and upgrade your existing VCHs.

Security Related Log Messages

Security-related information for vSphere Integrated Containers Engine appears in docker-personality.log and vicadmin.log, that you can access from the VCH Admin portal for a VCH.

Sensitive Data

The VMX file of the VCH endpoint VM stores vSphere Integrated Containers Engine configuration information, which allows most of the configuration to be read-only by the guest. The container VMs might hold sensitive application data, such as environment variables for processes, command arguments, and so on.

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