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Dynamic Plugin Ordering
The order in which plugins are executed in Kong Gateway is determined by their
static priority. As the name suggests, this value is static and can’t be
easily changed by the user.
You can override the priority for any Kong Gateway plugin using each plugin’s
ordering field. This determines plugin ordering during the
and lets you create dynamic dependencies between plugins.
Use one of the following tokens to describe a dependency to a plugin:
before: The plugin will be executed before a specified plugin or list of plugins.
after: The plugin will be executed after a specified plugin or list of plugins.
When a request is processed by Kong Gateway, it goes through various
depending on the configured plugins. You can influence the order in which
plugins are executed for each phase.
Currently, Kong Gateway supports dynamic plugin ordering in the
You can use the following API to express dependencies for plugins within a
certain request phase (examples are in decK-formatted YAML):
For example, if you want to express that PluginA’s
access phase should
run before PluginB’s
access phase, you would write something like this:
Consumer-scoped plugins don’t support dynamic ordering because consumer mapping
also runs in the access phase. The order of the plugins must be determined
after consumer mapping has happened. Kong Gateway can’t reliably
change the order of the plugins in relation to consumer mapping.
Cascading deletes & updates
There is no support to detect if a plugin has a dependency to
a deleted plugin, so handle your configuration with care.
Dynamic plugin ordering requires sorting plugins during a request. This naturally
adds latency to the request. In some cases, this might be compensated for when
you run rate limiting before an expensive authentication plugin.
Re-ordering any plugin in a workspace has performance implications to all
other plugins within the same workspace. If possible, consider offloading plugin
ordering to a separate workspace.
Validating dynamic plugin ordering is a non-trivial task and would require
insight into the user’s business logic. Kong Gateway tries to catch
basic mistakes but it can’t detect all potentially dangerous configurations.
If using dynamic ordering, manually test all configurations, and handle this
feature with care.
Kong Manager also supports dynamic plugin ordering configuration through the
UI. For more information, see Get Started with Dynamic Plugin Ordering
Check out the examples in the
getting started guide for dynamic plugin ordering.