Encrypting your database password v4

Failover Manager requires you to encrypt your database password before including it in the cluster properties file. Use the efm utility located in the /usr/edb/efm-4.<x>/bin directory to encrypt the password. When encrypting a password, you can either pass the password on the command line when you invoke the utility or use the EFMPASS environment variable.

To encrypt a password, use the command:

efm encrypt <cluster_name> [ --from-env ]

Where <cluster_name> specifies the name of the Failover Manager cluster.

If you include the --from-env option, you must export the value you want to encrypt before invoking the encryption utility. For example:

export EFMPASS=password

If you don't include the --from-env option, Failover Manager prompts you to enter the database password twice before generating an encrypted password for you to place in your cluster property file. When the utility shares the encrypted password, copy and paste the encrypted password into the cluster property files.


Many Java vendors ship their version of Java with full-strength encryption included but not enabled due to export restrictions. If you encounter an error that refers to an illegal key size when attempting to encrypt the database password, download and enable a Java cryptography extension (JCE) that provides an unlimited policy for your platform.

This example shows using the encrypt utility to encrypt a password for the acctg cluster:

# efm encrypt acctg
This utility will generate an encrypted password for you to place in
 your Failover Manager cluster property file:
Please enter the password and hit enter:
Please enter the password again to confirm:
The encrypted password is: 516b36fb8031da17cfbc010f7d09359c
Please paste this into your acctg.properties file

The utility notifies you if a properties file doesn't exist.

After receiving your encrypted password, paste the password into the properties file and start the Failover Manager service. If there's a problem with the encrypted password, the Failover Manager service doesn't start:

[witness@localhost ~]# systemctl start edb-efm-4.8
Job for edb-efm-4.8.service failed because the control process exited with error code. See "systemctl status edb-efm-4.8.service" and "journalctl -xe" for details.

If you receive this message when starting the Failover Manager service, see the startup log /var/log/efm-4.8/startup-efm.log for more information.

If you are using RHEL/CentOS 7.x or RHEL/Rocky Linux/AlmaLinux 8.x, startup information is also available with the following command:

systemctl status edb-efm-4.8

To prevent a cluster from inadvertently connecting to the database of another cluster, the cluster name is incorporated into the encrypted password. If you modify the cluster name, you must re-encrypt the database password and update the cluster properties file.

Using the EFMPASS environment variable

This example shows using the --from-env environment variable when encrypting a password. Before invoking the efm encrypt command, set the value of EFMPASS to the password 1safepassword:

# export EFMPASS=1safepassword

Then, invoke efm encrypt, specifying the --from-env option:

# efm encrypt acctg --from-env
# 7ceecd8965fa7a5c330eaa9e43696f83

The encrypted password 7ceecd8965fa7a5c330eaa9e43696f83 is returned as a text value; when using a script, you can check the exit code of the command to confirm that the command succeeded. A successful execution returns 0.