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Spring Vault

Spring Vault provides client-side support for accessing, storing and revoking secrets. With HashiCorp’s Vault you have a central place to manage external secret data for applications across all environments. Vault can manage static and dynamic secrets such as application data, username/password for remote applications/resources and provide credentials for external services such as MySQL, PostgreSQL, Apache Cassandra, Consul, AWS and more.

Getting Help

For a comprehensive treatment of all the Spring Vault features, please refer to:


Specifically for Spring applications:

  • JavaConfig for Vault Client

  • Retrieve secrets from Vault and initialize Spring Environment with remote property sources

  • Obtain secrets secured with SSL

  • Token, AppId, AppRole, Client Certificate, Cubbyhole, and AWS-EC2 authentication

  • Bootstrap application context: a parent context for the main application that can be trained to do anything

Spring Boot users can benefit from Spring Cloud Vault Config, an optimized integration with Vault to provide encrypted Vault properties inside Spring Boot applications. Spring Cloud Vault can also generate credentials for various services like MySQL, PostgreSQL, MongoDB and much more.

Quick Start

Maven configuration

Add the Maven dependency:


If you’d rather like the latest snapshots of the upcoming major version, use our Maven snapshot repository and declare the appropriate dependency version.


  <name>Spring Snapshot Repository</name>

Vault Setup


To get started with Vault and this guide you need a *NIX-like operating systems that provides:

  • curl, openssl and unzip

  • at least Java 8 and a properly configured JAVA_HOME environment variable


If you use Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) you have to share JAVA_HOME between WSL and Windows. Call following command in PowerShell:


Install Vault

$ src/test/bash/

Create SSL certificates for Vault

$ src/test/bash/
Note creates certificates in work/ca and a JKS truststore work/keystore.jsk. If you want to run Spring Vault using this quickstart guide you need to configure the truststore to file:work/keystore.jks.

Start Vault server

$ src/test/bash/

Vault is started listening on using the inmem storage and https. Vault is sealed and not initialized when starting up so you need to initialize it first.

$ cd vault
$ export VAULT_ADDR="https://localhost:8200"
$ export VAULT_SKIP_VERIFY=true # Don't do this for production
$ ./vault operator init

You should see something like:

Key 1: 7149c6a2e16b8833f6eb1e76df03e47f6113a3288b3093faf5033d44f0e70fe701
Key 2: 901c534c7988c18c20435a85213c683bdcf0efcd82e38e2893779f152978c18c02
Key 3: 03ff3948575b1165a20c20ee7c3e6edf04f4cdbe0e82dbff5be49c63f98bc03a03
Key 4: 216ae5cc3ddaf93ceb8e1d15bb9fc3176653f5b738f5f3d1ee00cd7dccbe926e04
Key 5: b2898fc8130929d569c1677ee69dc5f3be57d7c4b494a6062693ce0b1c4d93d805
Initial Root Token: 19aefa97-cccc-bbbb-aaaa-225940e63d76

Vault initialized with 5 keys and a key threshold of 3. Please
securely distribute the above keys. When the Vault is re-sealed,
restarted, or stopped, you must provide at least 3 of these keys
to unseal it again.

Vault does not store the master key. Without at least 3 keys,
your Vault will remain permanently sealed.

Vault will initialize and return a set of unsealing keys and the root token. Pick 3 keys and unseal Vault.

$ ./vault operator unseal (Key 1)
$ ./vault operator unseal (Key 2)
$ ./vault operator unseal (Key 3)

Vault is now initialized and unsealed.

Using VaultTemplate

The class VaultTemplate, located in the package org.springframework.vault.core, is the central class of the Spring’s Vault support providing a rich feature set to interact with Vault. The template offers convenience operations to read, write and delete data in Vault and provides a mapping between your domain objects and Vault data.

You can have Spring initializing Spring Vault by providing a JavaConfig:

public class AppConfig extends AbstractVaultConfiguration {

     * Specify an endpoint for connecting to Vault.
    public VaultEndpoint vaultEndpoint() {
        return new VaultEndpoint();

     * Configure a client authentication.
     * Please consider a more secure authentication method
     * for production use.
    public ClientAuthentication clientAuthentication() {
        return new TokenAuthentication("…");

and then use VaultTemplate through its interface VaultOperations:

public class MyApp {

    @Autowired VaultOperations vaultOperations;

    public void useVault() {

        Secrets secrets = new Secrets();
        secrets.username = "hello";
        secrets.password = "world";

        vaultOperations.write("secret/myapp", secrets);

        VaultResponseSupport<Secrets> response ="secret/myapp", Secrets.class);



@VaultPropertySource provides a convenient and declarative mechanism for adding a PropertySource to Spring’s Environment.

To be used in conjunction with @Configuration classes. Example usage

Given a Vault path secret/my-application containing the configuration data pair database.password=mysecretpassword, the following @Configuration class uses @VaultPropertySource to contribute secret/my-application to the Environment’s set of `PropertySources.

public class AppConfig {

    @Autowired Environment env;

    public TestBean testBean() {
        TestBean testBean = new TestBean();
        return testBean;


Build requirements for Vault

Spring Vault requires SSL certificates and a running Vault instance listening on localhost:8200. Certificates and the Vault setup are scripted, the scripts are located in src/test/bash.

The following scripts need to be run prior to building the project for the tests to pass.

$ ./src/test/bash/
$ ./src/test/bash/
$ ./src/test/bash/
$ ./src/test/bash/

Alternatively you can run

$ ./src/test/bash/

Changes to the documentation should be made to the adocs found under src/main/asciidoc/

Basic Compile and Test

To build the source you will need to install JDK 1.6.

Spring Vault uses Maven for most build-related activities, and you should be able to get off the ground quite quickly by cloning the project you are interested in and typing

$ ./mvnw install
You can also install Maven (>=3.3.3) yourself and run the mvn command in place of ./mvnw in the examples below. If you do that you also might need to add -P spring if your local Maven settings do not contain repository declarations for spring pre-release artifacts.
Be aware that you might need to increase the amount of memory available to Maven by setting a MAVEN_OPTS environment variable with a value like -Xmx512m -XX:MaxPermSize=128m. We try to cover this in the .mvn configuration, so if you find you have to do it to make a build succeed, please raise a ticket to get the settings added to source control.

For hints on how to build the project look in .travis.yml if there is one. There should be a "script" and maybe "install" command. Also look at the "services" section to see if any services need to be running locally (e.g. mongo or rabbit). Ignore the git-related bits that you might find in "before_install" since they’re related to setting git credentials and you already have those.

If all else fails, build with the command from .travis.yml (usually ./mvnw install).


The module has a "distribute" profile, and if you switch that on it will try to build asciidoc sources from src/main/asciidoc.

Working with the code

If you don’t have an IDE preference we would recommend that you use Spring Tools Suite or Eclipse when working with the code. We use the m2eclipe eclipse plugin for maven support. Other IDEs and tools should also work without issue as long as they use Maven 3.3.3 or better.

Importing into eclipse with m2eclipse

We recommend the m2eclipe eclipse plugin when working with eclipse. If you don’t already have m2eclipse installed it is available from the "eclipse marketplace".

Older versions of m2e do not support Maven 3.3, so once the projects are imported into Eclipse you will also need to tell m2eclipse to use the right profile for the projects.If you see many different errors related to the POMs in the projects, check that you have an up to date installation. If you can’t upgrade m2e, add the "spring" profile to your settings.xml. Alternatively you can copy the repository settings from the "spring" profile of the parent pom into your settings.xml.

Importing into eclipse without m2eclipse

If you prefer not to use m2eclipse you can generate eclipse project metadata using the following command:

$ ./mvnw eclipse:eclipse

The generated eclipse projects can be imported by selecting import existing projects from the file menu.


Spring Vault is released under the non-restrictive Apache 2.0 license, and follows a very standard Github development process, using Github tracker for issues and merging pull requests into main. If you want to contribute even something trivial please do not hesitate, but follow the guidelines below.

Sign the Contributor License Agreement

Before we accept a non-trivial patch or pull request we will need you to sign the Contributor License Agreement. Signing the contributor’s agreement does not grant anyone commit rights to the main repository, but it does mean that we can accept your contributions, and you will get an author credit if we do. Active contributors might be asked to join the core team, and given the ability to merge pull requests.

Code of Conduct

This project adheres to the Contributor Covenant code of conduct. By participating, you are expected to uphold this code. Please report unacceptable behavior to

Code Conventions and Housekeeping

None of these is essential for a pull request, but they will all help. They can also be added after the original pull request but before a merge.

  • Spring Vault uses the Spring JavaFormat conventions. Formatting is applied when running the build through $ ./mvnw compile IDE plugins are available from

  • Make sure all new .java files to have a Javadoc class comment with at least an @author tag identifying you, and preferably at least a paragraph on what the class is for.

  • Add the ASF license header comment to all new .java files (copy from existing files in the project)

  • Add yourself as an @author to the .java files that you modify substantially (more than cosmetic changes).

  • Please include unit tests.

  • If no-one else is using your branch, please rebase it against the current main (or other target branch in the main project).

  • When writing a commit message please follow these conventions, if you are fixing an existing issue please add Fixes gh-XXXX at the end of the commit message (where XXXX is the issue number).