Storing Secrets

The configuration.yaml file is a plain-text file, thus it is readable by anyone who has access to the file. The file contains passwords and API tokens which need to be redacted if you want to share your configuration. By using !secrets you can remove any private information from you configuration files. This separation can also help you to keep easier track of your passwords and API keys. As they are all stored at one place and no longer spread across the configuration.yaml file or even multiple yaml files if you split up your configuration.

Using secrets.yaml

The workflow for moving private information to secrets.yaml is very similar to the splitting of the configuration. Create a secrets.yaml file in your Home assistant configuration directory (The location of the folder differs between operating systems: on OS X and Linux it’s ~/.homeassistant and on Windows it’s %APPDATA%/.homeassistant).

The entries for password and API keys in the configuration.yaml file usually looks like the example below.

  api_password: YOUR_PASSWORD

Those entries need to be replaced with !secret and a identifier.

  api_password: !secret http_password

The secrets.yaml file contains the corresponding password assigned to the identifier.

http_password: YOUR_PASSWORD

Debugging secrets

When you start splitting your configuration into multiple files, you might end up with configuration in sub folders. Secrets will be resolved in this order:

  • A secrets.yaml located in the same folder as the yaml file referencing the secret,
  • next, parent folders will be searched for a secrets.yaml file with the secret, stopping at the folder with the main configuration.yaml,
  • lastly, keyring will be queried for the secret (more info below)

To see where secrets are being loaded from you can either add an option to your secrets.yaml file or use the check_config script.

Option 1: Print where secrets are retrieved from to the Home Assistant log by adding the following to secrets.yaml:

logger: debug

This will not print the actual secret’s value to the log.

Option 2: View where secrets are retrieved from and the contents of all secrets.yaml files used, you can use the check_config script from the command line:

hass --script check_config --secrets

This will print all your secrets

Storing passwords in a keyring managed by your OS

Using Keyring is an alternative way to secrets.yaml. They can be managed from the command line via the keyring script.

$ hass --script keyring --help

To store a password in keyring, replace your password or API key with !secret and an identifier in configuration.yaml file.

  api_password: !secret http_password

Create an entry in your keyring.

$ hass --script keyring set http_password

If you launch Home Assistant now, you will be prompted for the keyring password to unlock your keyring.

$ hass
Config directory: /home/fab/.homeassistant
Please enter password for encrypted keyring:

If you are using the Python Keyring, autostarting of Home Assistant will no longer work.