Aria Encryption Keys

As with other storage engines that support data-at-rest encryption, Aria relies on an Encryption Key Management plugin to handle its encryption keys. Where the support is available, Aria can use multiple keys.

Encryption Keys

MariaDB keeps track of each encryption key internally using a 32-bit integer, which serves as the key identifier. Unlike InnoDB, Aria does not support the ENCRYPTION_KEY_ID table option (for more information, see MDEV-18049), which allows the user to specify the encryption key to use. Instead, Aria defaults to specific encryption keys provided by the Encryption Key Management plugin.

  • When working with user-created tables, Aria encrypts them to disk using the ID 1 key.
  • When working with internal temporary tables written to disk, Aria encrypts them to disk using the ID 2 key, unless there is no ID 2 key, then it falls back on the ID 1 key.

Key Rotation

Some key management and encryption plugins allow you to automatically rotate and version your encryption keys. If a plugin support key rotation, and if it rotates the encryption keys, then InnoDB's background encryption threads can re-encrypt InnoDB pages that use the old key version with the new key version. However, Aria does not have a similar mechanism, which means that the tables remain encrypted with the older key version. For more information, see MDEV-18971.

In order for key rotation to work, both the backend key management service (KMS) and the corresponding key management and encryption plugin have to support key rotation. See Encryption Key Management: Support for Key Rotation in Encryption Plugins to determine which plugins currently support key rotation.


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