This repository has been archived by the owner. It is now read-only.
Hubble's Auditing System. This repo is deprecated in favor of
Clone or download
Fetching latest commit…
Cannot retrieve the latest commit at this time.




Nova is designed to audit the compliance and security level of a system. It is composed of multiple modules, which ingest YAML configuration profiles to run a single or series of audits against a system.

Two different installation methods are outlined below. The first method is more stable (and therefore recommended). This method uses Salt's package manager to track versioned, packaged updates to Hubble's components.

The second method installs directly from git. It should be considered bleeding edge and possibly unstable.


Each of the four HubbleStack components have been packaged for use with Salt's Package Manager (SPM). Note that all SPM installation commands should be done on the Salt Master.

Required Configuration

Salt's Package Manager (SPM) installs files into /srv/spm/{salt,pillar}. Ensure that this path is defined in your Salt Master's file_roots:

  - /srv/salt
  - /srv/spm/salt


This should be the default value. To verify run: salt-call config.get file_roots


Remember to restart the Salt Master after making this change to the configuration.

Installation (Packages)

Installation is as easy as downloading and installing packages. (Note: in future releases you'll be able to subscribe directly to our HubbleStack SPM repo for updates and bugfixes!)

Nova packages have been divided into modules and profiles. This way we can iterate policy changes separate from the code.

Nova Modules

spm local install hubblestack_nova-2016.10.2-1.spm

Nova Profiles

spm local install hubblestack_nova_profiles-20161101-1.spm

You should now be able to sync the new modules to your minion(s) using the sync_modules Salt utility:

salt \* saltutil.sync_modules

Once these modules are synced you are ready to run a HubbleStack Nova audit.

Skip to :ref:`Usage <nova_usage>`.

Installation (Manual)

Place _modules/ into your salt/_modules/ directory, and sync it to the minions.

git clone hubblestack-nova.git
cd hubblestack-nova.git
mkdir -p /srv/salt/_modules/
cp _modules/ /srv/salt/_modules/
cp -a hubblestack_nova_profiles /srv/salt/
cp -a hubblestack_nova /srv/salt/

salt \* saltutil.sync_modules
salt \* hubble.sync

Installation (GitFS)

This installation method subscribes directly to our GitHub repository, pinning to a tag or branch. This method requires no package installation or manual checkouts.

Requirements: GitFS support on your Salt Master.


    - base: v2017.1.0


Remember to restart the Salt Master after applying this change.

Skip to :ref:`Usage <nova_usage>`.


There are four primary functions in the module:

  1. hubble.sync will sync the hubblestack_nova_profiles/ and hubblestack_nova/ directories to the minion(s).
  2. hubble.load will load the synced audit modules and their yaml configuration files.
  3. hubble.audit will audit the minion(s) using the YAML profile(s) you provide as comma-separated arguments
  4. will audit the minion(s) using the top.nova configuration.

hubble.audit takes two optional arguments. The first is a comma-separated list of paths. These paths can be files or directories within the hubblestack_nova_profiles directory. The second argument allows for toggling Nova configuration, such as verbosity, level of detail, etc.

If hubble.audit is run without targeting any audit configs or directories, it will instead run with no arguments.

hubble.audit will return a list of audits which were successful, and a list of audits which failed.

Here are some example calls:

# Run the cve scanner and the CIS profile:
salt \* hubble.audit cve.scan-v2,cis.centos-7-level-1-scored-v1

# Run with the default topfile (top.nova)
salt \*

# Run all yaml configs and tags under salt://hubblestack_nova_profiles/foo/
# and salt://hubblestack_nova_profiles/bar, but only run audits with tags
# starting with "CIS"
salt \* hubble.audit foo,bar tags='CIS*'

Nova Topfiles

Nova topfiles look very similar to saltstack topfiles, except the top-level key is always nova, as nova doesn't have environments.

    - cve.scan-v2
    - network.ssh
    - network.smtp
    - cis.centos-7-level-1-scored-v1
    - cis.centos-7-level-2-scored-v1
    - network.ssh
    - cis.debian-7-level-1-scored: 'CIS*'

Additionally, all nova topfile matches are compound matches, so you never need to define a match type like you do in saltstack topfiles.

Each list item is a string representing the dot-separated location of a yaml file which will be run with hubble.audit. You can also specify a tag glob to use as a filter for just that yaml file, using a colon after the yaml file (turning it into a dictionary). See the last two lines in the yaml above for examples.


salt '*'
salt '*' foo/bar/top.nova
salt '*' foo/bar.nova verbose=True

Compensating Control Configuration

In some cases, your organization may want to skip certain audit checks for certain hosts. This is supported via compensating control configuration.

You can skip a check globally by adding a control: <reason> key to the check itself. This key should be added at the same level as description and trigger pieces of a check. In this case, the check will never run, and will output under the Controlled results key.

Nova also supports separate control profiles, for more fine-grained control using topfiles. You can use a separate YAML top-level key called control. Generally, you'll put this top-level key inside of a separate YAML file and only include it in the top-data for the hosts for which it is relevant.

For these separate control configs, the audits will always run, whether they are controlled or not. However, controlled audits which fail will be converted from Failure to Controlled in a post-processing operation.

The control config syntax is as follows:

  - CIS-2.1.4: This is the reason we control the check
  - some_other_tag:
      reason: This is the reason we control the check
  - a_third_tag_with_no_reason

Note that providing a reason for the control is optional. Any of the three formats shown in the yaml list above will work.

Once you have your compensating control config, just target the yaml to the hosts you want to control using your topfile. In this case, all the audits will still run, but if any of the controlled checks fail, they will be removed from Failure and added to Controlled, and will be treated as a Success for the purposes of compliance percentage.


In order to run the audits once daily, you can use the following cron job:


@daily       root /usr/bin/salt '*' verbose=True,show_profile=True --return splunk_nova_return


Under the Hood

1. The directory/environment in which nova searches for audit modules are configurable via pillar. The defaults are shown below:

    saltenv: base
    module_dir: salt://hubblestack_nova
    profile_dir: salt://hubblestack_nova_profiles

2. By default, hubble.audit will call hubble.load (which in turn calls hubble.sync) in order to ensure that it is auditing with the most up-to-date information. These operations are fairly fast, but if you want to avoid the additional overhead, you can disable these behaviors via pillar (defaults are shown, change to False to disable behaviors):

    autosync: True
    autoload: True


If you're interested in contributing to this project this section outlines the structure and requirements for Nova audit module development.

Anatomy of a Nova audit module

# -*- encoding: utf-8 -*-
Loader and primary interface for nova modules

:maintainer: HubbleStack
:maturity: 20160214
:platform: Linux
:requires: SaltStack

from __future__ import absolute_import
import logging

All Nova plugins should include the above header, expanding the docstring to include full documentation

import fnmatch
import salt.utils

def __virtual__():
    if salt.utils.is_windows():
        return False, 'This audit module only runs on linux'
    return True

def audit(data_list, tag, verbose=False, show_profile=False, debug=False):
    __tags__ = []
    for profile, data in data_list:
        # This is where you process the dictionaries passed in by,
        # searching for data pertaining to this audit module. Modules which
        # require no data should use yaml which is empty except for a
        # top-level key, and should only do work if the top-level key is
        # found in the data

        # if show_profile is True, then we need to also inject the profile
        # in the data for each check so that it appears in verbose output

    ret = {'Success': [], 'Failure': []}
    for tag in __tags__:
        if fnmatch.fnmatch(tag, tags):
            # We should run this tag
            # <do audit stuff here>
    return ret

All Nova plugins require a __virtual__() function to determine module compatibility, and an audit() function to perform the actual audit functionality

The audit() function must take four arguments, data_list, tag, verbose, show_profile, and debug. The data_list argument is a list of dictionaries passed in by gets this data from loading the specified yaml for the audit run. Your audit module should only run if it finds its own data in this list. The tag argument is a glob expression for which tags the audit function should run. It is the job of the audit module to compare the tag glob with all tags supported by this module and only run the audits which match. The verbose argument defines whether additional information should be returned for audits, such as description and remediation instructions. The show_profile argument tells whether the profile should be injected into the verbose data for each check. The debug argument tells whether the module should log additional debugging information at debug log level.

The return value should be a dictionary, with optional keys "Success", "Failure", and "Controlled". The values for these keys should be a list of one-key dictionaries in the form of {<tag>: <string_description>}, or a list of one-key dictionaries in the form of {<tag>: <data_dict>} (in the case of verbose).


If you are interested in contributing or offering feedback to this project feel free to submit an issue or a pull request. We're very open to community contribution.