Overview of the SecretManagement and SecretStore modules
The SecretManagement module helps users manage secrets by providing a common set of cmdlets that interface with secrets vaults. SecretManagement provides an extensible model where local and remote vaults can be registered for use. This allows you to separate the specific details for accessing and managing the vault from your scripts that need secrets.
Since SecretManagement is a module abstraction layer in PowerShell, it becomes useful once extension vaults are registered. There are trade-offs between security, usability, and specificity for any vault so it is up to the user to configure SecretManagement to integrate with the vaults that best match their requirements, as well as to assess the extent to which they trust any vault extensions not developed by Microsoft.
SecretManagement does not impose authentication requirements for extension vaults. This allows each individual vault to provide its own mechanism. Some may require a password or token, while others may leverage current account credentials.
SecretManagement enables the following key scenarios:
- Sharing a script across your organization without knowing the local vault of all the users
- Running your deployment script in local, test, and production environments with the change of only a single parameter, Vault
- Changing the backend of the authentication method to meet specific security or organizational needs without needing to update all my scripts
Extension Vault Ecosystem
SecretManagement becomes useful once you install and register extension vaults. Extension vaults, which are PowerShell modules with a particular structure, provide the connection between the SecretManagement module and any local or remote Secret Vault.
SecretStore is a cross-platform extension module that implements a local vault. The SecretStore vault stores secrets, locally in a file, for the current user. It uses .NET Core cryptographic APIs to encrypt file contents. This extension vault works on all platforms that support PowerShell 7.
Discovering and Installing Vault Extensions
To find extension vault modules, search the PowerShell Gallery for the SecretManagement tag.
Some community vault extensions that are available:
- Azure KeyVault (Microsoft Owned)
- Hashicorp Vault
Community feedback and support
Community feedback has been essential to the iterative development of these modules. To file issues or get support for the SecretManagement interface or vault development experience please use the SecretManagement repository. For issues with the SecretStore module please use the SecretStore repository.
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