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News from the community of users and contributors

Open Policy Agent for Trino arrived

Trino now ships with an access control integration using the popular and widely used Open Policy Agent (OPA) from the Cloud Native Computing Foundation. The release of Trino 438 marks an important milestone of the effort towards this integration.

Collaboration and history #

Open Policy Agent was first released in 2016 and has gained more and more popularity in the ecosystem of cloud native applications and beyond.

Initial efforts for an integration with Trino started at Bloomberg, Stackable, Raft, and other places separately and sometimes in parallel, with only partial collaboration. You might have first heard about it in August 2022 in the Trino Community Broadcast episode 39 with a team from Raft as guests.

Usage and experience with OPA grew. In the end, Pablo Arteaga from Bloomberg and Sebastian Bernauer and Sönke Liebau from Stackable had the initiative to start a pull request to Trino. Their persistence and collaboration led them through many review comments, update commits, and even a second PR, to submit a talk and eventually present at Trino Summit 2023 about the Open Policy Agent access control with Trino and their motivation to move from Apache Ranger to OPA.

OPA at Trino Summit 2023 #

The presentation from Pablo and Sönke titled “Trino OPA authorizer - An open source love story” received a lot of interest from the audience at the event and on YouTube since then. They detailed the architectural differences of using Ranger and OPA. Sönke detailed the usage of OPA in the Stackable platform and how it enables a single access control platform to apply across many systems. They discussed their collaboration on the pull request, and Pablo showed a migration path from Ranger, and a full demo of OPA with Trino.

They also made the slide deck available for your reference.

Edward Morgan and Bhaarat Sharma from Raft also presented Avoiding pitfalls with query federation in data lakehouses at Trino Summit, and detailed their OPA usage in their Data Fabric platform. It combines Delta Lake, Trino, Apache Kafka, and Open Policy Agent (OPA) into a robust lakehouse data platform. They talked about access control in Trino overall and how important it is for their customers, including the US Department of Defense. Their presentation also included a demo of OPA with Trino.

OPA on the way to Trino #

Pablo and Sebastian continued their efforts on the pull request after Trino Summit. They worked successfully with Dain on the code review and necessary changes, and helped Manfred with the documentation.

Finally, with the release of Trino 438, the Open Policy Agent access control is available to all Trino users.

The community is already taking notice with follow up pull requests for further improvements and blog posts such as Enhancing Security and Observability in Trino with Open Policy Agent and OpenTelemetry from Isa Inalcik.

Benefits of OPA #

The arrival of OPA support for Trino marks an important step. OPA is a mature and widely used access control system. Its ecosystem includes many integrations, user interfaces, development tools, and other resources.

OPA is a very flexible authorization system, making it an ideal match for Trino. Trino deployments are often part of a diverse data platform, spanning a variety of interconnected data sources, pipelines, client tools and applications.

Trino users now have an alternative to the file-based access control from the Trino project itself, the effort to support your own Ranger integration, or the use of commercial offerings for access control.

What’s next #

We reached another milestone but we are not done yet. Specifically for OPA, we are looking at the following next tasks:

  • Get more features from various older, private forks converted into pull requests to Trino so everyone can benefit.
  • Update the documentation with more practical advice and tips.
  • Provide further resources for running OPA with Trino, writing rego scripts, and helping the community.
  • Implementation of row level filtering and column masking, based on the draft from Pablo

Special thanks go to everyone participating so far. Consider this an open invitation to join the effort.

Ping me on Slack directly or find us in #opa-dev.