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From "Christopher Tubbs (JIRA)" <>
Subject [jira] [Resolved] (ACCUMULO-1928) Class loader issues with building auth/auth/perm extensions
Date Mon, 22 Apr 2019 23:49:00 GMT


Christopher Tubbs resolved ACCUMULO-1928.
    Resolution: Cannot Reproduce

I don't think this is still an issue. However, please feel free to open an issue at
if it is.

> Class loader issues with building auth/auth/perm extensions
> -----------------------------------------------------------
>                 Key: ACCUMULO-1928
>                 URL:
>             Project: Accumulo
>          Issue Type: Bug
>    Affects Versions: 1.5.0, 1.6.0
>            Reporter: Michael Allen
>            Priority: Major
> In the course of building extensions to take advantage of the {{Authenticator}}, {{Authorizor}}
and {{PermissionHandler}} interfaces, I ran into several issues with how the extension classes
were loaded (and reloaded) using {{AccumuloVFSClassloader}}.  These issues ultimately meant
that we had to make the decision to put these extensions into {{$ACCUMULO_HOME/lib}}, rather
than {{$ACCUMULO_HOME/lib/ext}}, so that they would not be reloaded and we would not encounter
those issues.
> We should figure out how to fix up the classloader such that it makes it possible to
put extensions like these into {{$$ACCUMULO_HOME/lib/ext}}, or we should document that it
is not recommended to do so.
> So what were the problems?
> 1. In 1.5.0, Authentication tokens from within the extension could not be loaded via
the normal creation pathway.  This pathway in {{CredentialHelper}} includes the following
line of code:
> {code}
> Object obj = Class.forName(tokenClass).newInstance();
> {code}
> In 1.6 this code has been replaced with a call in {{AuthenticationToken.AuthenticationTokenSerializer.deserialize()}}
that uses {{AccumuloVFSClassloader}}, but I wonder if we shouldn't also make a 1.5.X change
to at least make it possible to do it there?  Otherwise anyone trying to create an extension
for 1.5.X can only use {{PasswordToken}}s
> 2.  Even when you do or don't fix #1, it leads you on to a different, less tractable
> The {{Authenticatior}} etc. classes are loaded by {{SecurityOperation}} singleton, using
{{AccumuloVFSClassloader}} and the objects are held within the singleton, which is held statically
by the {{SecurityOperation}} class.  That's all well and good, and let's call that {{AccumuloVSFClassloader}}
instances that loaded those classes {{CL1}}.
> But now let's say you stick a new version of your JAR file into {{$ACCUMULO_HOME/lib/ext}}.
 {{AccumuloVFSClassloader}} happily creates a new classloader (call it {{CL2}}) for you and
reloads your classes.  *However*, the objects instantiated by {{SecurityOperation}} still
owe their lineage to {{CL1}}.  When a new authentication token comes in and gets loaded by
{{CL2}}, its class name might look like a class from {{CL1}}, but when the {{Authenticator}}
that came from {{CL1}} tries to cast that {{CL2}}-based object, you get {{ClassCastException}}s
and are basically toast at that point.
> One possible fix here would be for {{AccumuloVFSClassloader}} to somehow notify interested
parties that classes had reloaded so that they could flush away any old classes if desired.
 There'd be some synchronization issues around doing this, to make sure that the security
stuff still worked reliably through this process.  You'd have no guarantee, though, that the
rest of the code wouldn't be hanging on to {{CL1}}-based object references and not letting
go.  Beating those bugs out may require too much coder discipline to be worth the feature.
> Another possible fix is to just say "don't do that for security-related features and
put them in {{$ACCUMULO_HOME/lib}}.  That's kind of giving up on being able to reload these
at runtime, but maybe that's OK.  Generally speaking, reloading your security assumptions
might be something you want to take the tablet server down for.

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