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This document describes the default networking configuration for the Admin GUI as well as common custom configurations.

Default Configuration

By default, the Admin GUI starts up without authentication (admin_gui_auth), and it assumes that the Admin API is available on port 8001 (admin_api_port) of the same host that serves the Admin GUI.

Custom Configuration

Common configurations to enable are

  1. serving the Admin GUI from a dedicated Kong node
  2. securing the Admin GUI via a Kong authentication plugin
  3. securing the Admin GUI and serving it from a dedicated node

When (1) the Admin GUI is on a dedicated Kong node, it must make external calls to the Admin API. Set admin_api_uri to the location of your Admin API.

When (2) the Admin GUI is secured via an authentication plugin and not on a dedicated node, it makes calls to the Admin API via the Kong proxy (which executes the plugin). By default, the proxy listens on ports 8000 and 8443 on localhost. Change proxy_listen if necessary, or set proxy_url.

When (3) the Admin GUI is secured and served from a dedicated node, set proxy_url to the location of the Kong proxy. The Admin API is not used directly in this case.

The table below summarizes which properties to set (or defaults to verify) when configuring the Admin GUI connectivity to the Admin API.

authentication enabled | local API | remote API | auth settings ———————–+————–+—————-+————– yes | proxy_listen | proxy_url | admin_gui_auth, enforce_rbac, admin_gui_auth_conf no | admin_listen | admin_api_uri | n/a

To enable authentication, configure the following properties:

  • admin_gui_auth - to indicate which Kong auth plugin to use
  • admin_gui_auth_conf (optional) - to configure the auth plugin
  • enforce_rbac - to on or both

⚠️ When Admin GUI authentication is enabled, RBAC must be turned on to enforce authorization rules. Otherwise, whoever can log in to the Admin GUI or access the Admin API proxy can perform any operation available on the Admin API.

The Admin API Proxy

When you enable admin_gui_auth Kong creates a service that routes to /_kong/admin. This route is accessible on the proxy to which the Admin GUI connects to make API requests, and it is secured by the authentication plugin that you specified. This route is intended for the Admin GUI application only and is subject to change. It should not be used in any scripts or external tools that connect to Kong. For these purposes, use the Admin API on its regular host and port, secured with RBAC.

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