Setting up database credentials in Amazon Secrets Manager - Amazon Relational Database Service
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Setting up database credentials in Amazon Secrets Manager

For each proxy that you create, you first use the Secrets Manager service to store sets of user name and password credentials. You create a separate Secrets Manager secret for each database user account that the proxy connects to on the RDS DB instance.

In Secrets Manager console, you create these secrets with values for the username and password fields. Doing so allows the proxy to connect to the corresponding database users on a RDS DB instance that you associate with the proxy. To do this, you can use the setting Credentials for other database, Credentials for RDS database, or Other type of secrets. Fill in the appropriate values for the User name and Password fields, and values for any other required fields. The proxy ignores other fields such as Host and Port if they're present in the secret. Those details are automatically supplied by the proxy.

You can also choose Other type of secrets. In this case, you create the secret with keys named username and password.

To connect through the proxy as a specific database user, make sure that the password associated with a secret matches the database password for that user. If there's a mismatch, you can update the associated secret in Secrets Manager. In this case, you can still connect to other accounts where the secret credentials and the database passwords do match.


For RDS for SQL Server, RDS Proxy needs a secret in Secrets Manager that is case sensitive to application code irrespective of the DB instance collation settings. For example, if your application can use both usernames "Admin" or "admin", then configure the proxy with secrets for both "Admin" and "admin". RDS Proxy does not accommodate username case-insensitivity in the authentication process between the client and proxy.

For more information about collation in SQL Server, see the Microsoft SQL Server documentation.

When you create a proxy through the Amazon CLI or RDS API, you specify the Amazon Resource Names (ARNs) of the corresponding secrets. You do so for all the DB user accounts that the proxy can access. In the Amazon Web Services Management Console, you choose the secrets by their descriptive names.

For instructions about creating secrets in Secrets Manager, see the Creating a secret page in the Secrets Manager documentation. Use one of the following techniques:

  • Use Secrets Manager in the console.

  • To use the CLI to create a Secrets Manager secret for use with RDS Proxy, use a command such as the following.

    aws secretsmanager create-secret --name "secret_name" --description "secret_description" --region region_name --secret-string '{"username":"db_user","password":"db_user_password"}'
  • You can also create a custom key to encrypt your Secrets Manager secret. The following command creates an example key.

    PREFIX=my_identifier aws kms create-key --description "$PREFIX-test-key" --policy '{ "Id":"$PREFIX-kms-policy", "Version":"2012-10-17", "Statement": [ { "Sid":"Enable IAM User Permissions", "Effect":"Allow", "Principal":{"AWS":"arn:aws-cn:iam::account_id:root"}, "Action":"kms:*","Resource":"*" }, { "Sid":"Allow access for Key Administrators", "Effect":"Allow", "Principal": { "AWS": ["$USER_ARN","arn:aws-cn:iam:account_id::role/Admin"] }, "Action": [ "kms:Create*", "kms:Describe*", "kms:Enable*", "kms:List*", "kms:Put*", "kms:Update*", "kms:Revoke*", "kms:Disable*", "kms:Get*", "kms:Delete*", "kms:TagResource", "kms:UntagResource", "kms:ScheduleKeyDeletion", "kms:CancelKeyDeletion" ], "Resource":"*" }, { "Sid":"Allow use of the key", "Effect":"Allow", "Principal":{"AWS":"$ROLE_ARN"}, "Action":["kms:Decrypt","kms:DescribeKey"], "Resource":"*" } ] }'

For example, the following commands create Secrets Manager secrets for two database users:

aws secretsmanager create-secret \ --name secret_name_1 --description "db admin user" \ --secret-string '{"username":"admin","password":"choose_your_own_password"}' aws secretsmanager create-secret \ --name secret_name_2 --description "application user" \ --secret-string '{"username":"app-user","password":"choose_your_own_password"}'

To create these secrets encrypted with your custom Amazon KMS key, use the following commands:

aws secretsmanager create-secret \ --name secret_name_1 --description "db admin user" \ --secret-string '{"username":"admin","password":"choose_your_own_password"}' --kms-key-id arn:aws-cn:kms:us-east-2:account_id:key/key_id aws secretsmanager create-secret \ --name secret_name_2 --description "application user" \ --secret-string '{"username":"app-user","password":"choose_your_own_password"}' --kms-key-id arn:aws-cn:kms:us-east-2:account_id:key/key_id

To see the secrets owned by your Amazon account, use a command such as the following.

aws secretsmanager list-secrets

When you create a proxy using the CLI, you pass the Amazon Resource Names (ARNs) of one or more secrets to the --auth parameter. The following Linux example shows how to prepare a report with only the name and ARN of each secret owned by your Amazon account. This example uses the --output table parameter that is available in Amazon CLI version 2. If you are using Amazon CLI version 1, use --output text instead.

aws secretsmanager list-secrets --query '*[].[Name,ARN]' --output table

To verify that you stored the correct credentials and in the right format in a secret, use a command such as the following. Substitute the short name or the ARN of the secret for your_secret_name.

aws secretsmanager get-secret-value --secret-id your_secret_name

The output should include a line displaying a JSON-encoded value like the following.

"SecretString": "{\"username\":\"your_username\",\"password\":\"your_password\"}",