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Origin CA Issuer

Origin CA Issuer is a cert-manager CertificateRequest controller for Cloudflare’s Origin CA feature.

Getting Started

We assume you have a Kubernetes cluster (1.16 or newer) with cert-manager (1.0 or newer) installed. We also assume you have permissions to create Custom Resource Definitions.

Installing Origin CA Issuer

First, we need to install the Custom Resource Definitions for the Origin CA Issuer.

kubectl apply -f deploy/crds

Then install the RBAC rules, which will allow the Origin CA Issuer to operate with OriginIssuer and CertificateRequest resources

kubectl apply -f deploy/rbac

Then install the controller, which will process Certificate Requests created by cert-manager.

kubectl apply -f deploy/manifests

By default the Origin CA Issuer will be deployed in the origin-ca-issuer namespace.

$ kubectl get -n origin-ca-issuer pod
NAME                                READY   STATUS      RESTARTS    AGE
pod/origin-ca-issuer-1234568-abcdw  1/1     Running     0           1m

Adding an OriginIssuer

With running the controller out of the way, we can now setup an issuer that’s connected to our Cloudflare account via the Cloudflare API.

We need to fetch our API service key for Origin CA. This key can be found by navigating to the API Tokens section of the Cloudflare Dashboard and viewing the “Origin CA Key” API key. This key will begin with “v1.0-” and is different than your normal API key. It is not currently possible to use an API Token with the Origin CA API at this time.

Once you’ve copied your Origin CA Key, you can use this to create the Secret used by the OriginIssuer.

kubectl create secret generic \
    --dry-run \
    -n default service-key \
    --from-literal key=v1.0-FFFFFFF-FFFFFFFF -oyaml

The create an OriginIssuer referencing the secret created above.

apiVersion: cert-manager.k8s.cloudflare.com/v1
kind: OriginIssuer
  name: prod-issuer
  namespace: default
  requestType: OriginECC
      name: service-key
      key: key
$ kubectl apply -f service-key.yaml -f issuer.yaml
originissuer.cert-manager.k8s.cloudflare.com/prod-issuer created
secret/service-key created

The status conditions of the OriginIssuer resource will be updated once the Origin CA Issuer is ready.

$ kubectl get originissuer.cert-manager.k8s.cloudflare.com prod-issuer -o json | jq .status.conditions
    "lastTransitionTime": "2020-10-07T00:05:00Z",
    "message": "OriginIssuer verified an ready to sign certificates",
    "reason": "Verified",
    "status": "True",
    "type": "Ready"

Creating our first certificate

We can create a cert-manager managed certificate, which will be automatically rotated by cert-manager before expiration.

apiVersion: cert-manager.io/v1
kind: Certificate
  name: example-com
  namespace: default
  # The secret name where cert-manager should store the signed certificate
  secretName: example-com-tls
    - example.com
  # Duation of the certificate
  duration: 168h
  # Renew a day before the certificate expiration
  renewBefore: 24h
  # Reference the Origin CA Issuer you created above, which must be in the same namespace.
    group: cert-manager.k8s.cloudflare.com
    kind: OriginIssuer
    name: prod-issuer

Note that the Origin CA API has stricter limitations than the Certificate object. For example, DNS SANs must be used, IP addresses are not allowed, and further restrictions on wildcards. See the Origin CA documentation for further details.

Ingress Certificate

You can use cert-manager’s support for Securing Ingress Resources along with the Origin CA Issuer to automatically create and renew certificates for Ingress resources, without needing to create a Certificate resource manually.

apiVersion: networking/v1
kind: Ingress
    # Reference the Origin CA Issuer you created above, which must be in the same namespace.
    cert-manager.io/issuer: prod-issuer
    cert-manager.io/issuer-kind: OriginIssuer
    cert-manager.io/issuer-group: cert-manager.k8s.cloudflare.com
  name: example
  namespace: default
    - host: example.com
         - pathType: Prefix
           path: /
                name: examplesvc
                  number: 80
    # specifying a host in the TLS section will tell cert-manager what
    # DNS SANs should be on the created certificate.
    - hosts:
        - example.com
      # cert-manager will create this secret
      secretName: example-tls

You may need additional annotations or spec fields for your specific Ingress controller.

Disable Approval Check

The Origin Issuer will wait for CertificateRequests to have an approved condition set before signing. If using an older version of cert-manager (pre-v1.3), you can disable this check by supplying the command line flag --disable-approved-check to the Issuer Deployment.

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