SpiceDB is an open source, Google Zanzibar-inspired, database system for creating and managing security-critical application permissions.
Developers create a schema that models their permissions requirements and use any of the official or community maintained client libraries to apply the schema to the database, insert data into the database, and query the data to efficiently check permissions in their applications.
Features that distinguish SpiceDB from other systems include:
- Expressive gRPC and HTTP/JSON APIs for checking permissions, listing access, and powering devtools
- A distributed, parallel graph-engine faithful to the architecture described in Google's Zanzibar paper
- A flexible consistency model configurable per-request that includes resistance to the New Enemy Problem
- An expressive schema language with tools for rapid prototyping, integration testing, and validating designs in CI/CD pipelines
- Pluggable storage system supporting in-memory, PostgreSQL, Cloud Spanner, CockroachDB, and MySQL
- Deep observability with Prometheus metrics, pprof profiles, structured logging, and OpenTelemetry tracing
Have questions? Ask in our Discord.
Want to learn more about the inspiration for SpiceDB? We've annotated Google's Zanzibar Paper with our own commentary.
Looking to contribute? See CONTRIBUTING.md.
You can find issues by priority: Urgent, High, Medium, Low, Maybe. There are also good first issues.
Installing the binary
Binary releases are available for Linux, macOS, and Windows on AMD64 and ARM64 architectures.
Homebrew users for both macOS and Linux can install the latest binary releases of SpiceDB and zed using the official tap:
brew install authzed/tap/spicedb authzed/tap/zed
Debian-based Linux users can install SpiceDB packages by adding a new APT source:
sudo echo "deb [trusted=yes] https://apt.fury.io/authzed/ /" > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/authzed-fury.list sudo apt update && apt install spicedb
RPM-based Linux users can install SpiceDB packages by adding a new YUM repository:
sudo cat << EOF >> /etc/yum.repos.d/Authzed-Fury.repo [authzed-fury] name=AuthZed Fury Repository baseurl=https://yum.fury.io/authzed/ enabled=1 gpgcheck=0 EOF sudo dnf install spicedb
Running a container
Container images are available for AMD64 and ARM64 architectures on the following registries:
Docker users can run the latest SpiceDB container with the following:
docker run --rm -p 50051:50051 authzed/spicedb serve --grpc-preshared-key "somerandomkeyhere"
SpiceDB containers use Chainguard Images to ship the bare minimum userspace which is a huge boon to security, but can complicate debugging. If you want to execute a user session into a running SpiceDB container and install packages, you can use one of our debug images.
-debug to any tag will provide you an image that has a userspace with debug tooling:
docker run --rm -ti --entrypoint sh authzed/spicedb:latest-debug
Containers are also available for each git commit to the
main branch under
Deploying to Kubernetes
Production Kubernetes users should be relying on a stable release of the SpiceDB Operator. The Operator enforces not only best practices, but orchestrates SpiceDB updates without downtime.
If you're only experimenting, feel free to try out one of our community-maintained examples for testing SpiceDB on Kubernetes:
kubectl apply -f https://raw.githubusercontent.com/authzed/examples/main/kubernetes/example.yaml
Developing your own schema
You can try both SpiceDB and zed entirely in your browser on the Playground thanks to the power of WebAssembly.
If you don't want to start with the examples loadable from the Playground, you can follow a guide for developing a schema or review the the schema language design documentation.
To get a quick idea of schema development, you can watch the creators of SpiceDB writing a schema for GitHub:
Trying out the API
For debugging or getting started, we recommend installing zed, the official command-line client. The Playground also has a tab for experimenting with zed all from within your browser.
When it's time to write code, we recommend using one of the existing client libraries whether it's official or community-maintained.
Because every millisecond counts, we recommend using libraries that leverage the gRPC API for production workloads.
To get an understanding of integrating an application with SpiceDB, you can follow the Protecting Your First App guide or review API documentation on the Buf Registry or Postman.
SpiceDB is a community project fueled by contributions from both organizations and individuals. We appreciate all contributions, large and small, and would like to thank all those involved.
In addition, we'd like to highlight a few notable contributions:
- The GitHub Authorization Team for implementing and contributing the MySQL datastore