Configuration of PostgreSQL Operator RBAC

PostreSQL Operator RBAC

The conf/postgres-operator/pgorole file is read at start up time when the operator is deployed to the Kubernetes cluster. This file defines the PostgreSQL Operator roles whereby PostgreSQL Operator API users can be authorized.

The conf/postgres-operator/pgouser file is read at start up time also and contains username, password, role, and namespace information as follows:


The format of the pgouser server file is:


The namespace is a comma separated list of namespaces that user has access to. If you do not specify a namespace, then all namespaces is assumed, meaning this user can access any namespace that the Operator is watching.

A user creates a .pgouser file in their $HOME directory to identify themselves to the Operator. An entry in .pgouser will need to match entries in the conf/postgres-operator/pgouser file. A sample .pgouser file contains the following:


The format of the .pgouser client file is:


The users pgouser file can also be located at:


or it can be found at a path specified by the PGOUSER environment variable.

If the user tries to access a namespace that they are not configured for within the server side pgouser file then they will get an error message as follows:

Error: user [pgouser1] is not allowed access to namespace [pgouser2]

If you wish to add all available permissions to a pgorole, you can specify it by using a single * in your configuration. Note that if you are editing your YAML file directly, you will need to ensure to write it as "*" to ensure it is recognized as a string.

The following list shows the current complete list of possible pgo permissions that you can specify within the pgorole file when creating roles:

Permission Description
ApplyPolicy allow pgo apply
Cat allow pgo cat
CreateBackup allow pgo backup
CreateCluster allow pgo create cluster
CreateDump allow pgo create pgdump
CreateFailover allow pgo failover
CreatePgAdmin allow pgo create pgadmin
CreatePgbouncer allow pgo create pgbouncer
CreatePolicy allow pgo create policy
CreateSchedule allow pgo create schedule
CreateUpgrade allow pgo upgrade
CreateUser allow pgo create user
DeleteBackup allow pgo delete backup
DeleteCluster allow pgo delete cluster
DeletePgAdmin allow pgo delete pgadmin
DeletePgbouncer allow pgo delete pgbouncer
DeletePolicy allow pgo delete policy
DeleteSchedule allow pgo delete schedule
DeleteUpgrade allow pgo delete upgrade
DeleteUser allow pgo delete user
DfCluster allow pgo df
Label allow pgo label
Reload allow pgo reload
Restart allow pgo restart
Restore allow pgo restore
RestoreDump allow pgo restore for pgdumps
ShowBackup allow pgo show backup
ShowCluster allow pgo show cluster
ShowConfig allow pgo show config
ShowPgAdmin allow pgo show pgadmin
ShowPgBouncer allow pgo show pgbouncer
ShowPolicy allow pgo show policy
ShowPVC allow pgo show pvc
ShowSchedule allow pgo show schedule
ShowNamespace allow pgo show namespace
ShowSystemAccounts allows commands with the --show-system-accounts flag to return system account information (e.g. the postgres superuser)
ShowUpgrade allow pgo show upgrade
ShowWorkflow allow pgo show workflow
Status allow pgo status
TestCluster allow pgo test
UpdatePgBouncer allow pgo update pgbouncer
UpdateCluster allow pgo update cluster
User allow pgo user
Version allow pgo version

If the user is unauthorized for a pgo command, the user will get back this response:

Error:  Authentication Failed: 403

Making Security Changes

Importantly, it is necesssary to redeploy the PostgreSQL Operator prior to giving effect to the user security changes in the pgouser and pgorole files:

make deployoperator

Performing this command will recreate the pgo-config ConfigMap that stores these files and is mounted by the Operator during its initialization.