9.4.2. Accessing JNDI over HTTPS

To be able to access JNDI over HTTP/SSL you need to enable an SSL connector on the web container. The details of this are covered in the Integrating Servlet Containers for Tomcat. We will demonstrate the use of HTTPS with a simple example client that uses an HTTPS URL as the JNDI provider URL. We will provide an SSL connector configuration for the example, so unless you are interested in the details of the SSL connector setup, the example is self contained.
We also provide a configuration of the HttpProxyFactory setup to use an HTTPS URL. The following example shows the section of the http-invoker.sarjboss-service.xml descriptor that the example installs to provide this configuration. All that has changed relative to the standard HTTP configuration are the InvokerURLPrefix and InvokerURLSuffix attributes, which setup an HTTPS URL using the 8443 port.
<!-- Expose the Naming service interface via HTTPS -->
<mbean code="org.jboss.invocation.http.server.HttpProxyFactory" 
    <!-- The Naming service we are proxying -->
    <attribute name="InvokerName">jboss:service=Naming</attribute>
    <!-- Compose the invoker URL from the cluster node address -->
    <attribute name="InvokerURLPrefix">https://</attribute>
    <attribute name="InvokerURLSuffix">:8443/invoker/JMXInvokerServlet 
    <attribute name="UseHostName">true</attribute>
    <attribute name="ExportedInterface">org.jnp.interfaces.Naming 
    <attribute name="JndiName"/>
    <attribute name="ClientInterceptors">
At a minimum, a JNDI client using HTTPS requires setting up a HTTPS URL protocol handler. We will be using the Java Secure Socket Extension (JSSE) for HTTPS. The JSSE documentation does a good job of describing what is necessary to use HTTPS, and the following steps were needed to configure the example client shown in Example 9.2, “A JNDI client that uses HTTPS as the transport”:
  • A protocol handler for HTTPS URLs must be made available to Java. The JSSE release includes an HTTPS handler in the com.sun.net.ssl.internal.www.protocol package. To enable the use of HTTPS URLs you include this package in the standard URL protocol handler search property, java.protocol.handler.pkgs. We set the java.protocol.handler.pkgs property in the Ant script.
  • The JSSE security provider must be installed in order for SSL to work. This can be done either by installing the JSSE jars as an extension package, or programatically. We use the programmatic approach in the example since this is less intrusive. Line 18 of the ExClient code demonstrates how this is done.
  • The JNDI provider URL must use HTTPS as the protocol. Lines 24-25 of the ExClient code specify an HTTP/SSL connection to the localhost on port 8443. The hostname and port are defined by the web container SSL connector.
  • The validation of the HTTPS URL hostname against the server certificate must be disabled. By default, the JSSE HTTPS protocol handler employs a strict validation of the hostname portion of the HTTPS URL against the common name of the server certificate. This is the same check done by web browsers when you connect to secured web site. We are using a self-signed server certificate that uses a common name of "Chapter 8 SSL Example" rather than a particular hostname, and this is likely to be common in development environments or intranets. The JBoss HttpInvokerProxy will override the default hostname checking if a org.jboss.security.ignoreHttpsHost system property exists and has a value of true. We set the org.jboss.security.ignoreHttpsHost property to true in the Ant script.

Example 9.2. A JNDI client that uses HTTPS as the transport

package org.jboss.chap3.ex1;

import java.security.Security;
import java.util.Properties;
import javax.naming.Context;
import javax.naming.InitialContext;
public class ExClient
    public static void main(String args[]) throws Exception
        Properties env = new Properties();

        Context ctx = new InitialContext(env);
        System.out.println("Created InitialContext, env=" + env);

        Object data = ctx.lookup("jmx/invoker/RMIAdaptor");
        System.out.println("lookup(jmx/invoker/RMIAdaptor): " + data);
To test the client, first build the chapter 3 example to create the chap3 configuration fileset.
[examples]$ ant -Dchap=naming config
Next, start the server using the naming configuration fileset:
[bin]$ sh run.sh -c naming
And finally, run the ExClient using:
[examples]$ ant -Dchap=naming -Dex=1 run-example

[java] Created InitialContext, env={java.naming. \ 
provider.url=https://localhost:8443/invoker/JNDIFactorySSL, java.naming. \
     [java] lookup(jmx/invoker/RMIAdaptor): org.jboss.invocation.jrmp. \