Carbon Black Cloud APIs require authentication to secure your data.

There are a few methods for authentication listed below. Every method requires an API Key. See the Developer Network Authentication Guide to learn how to generate an API Key.

The SDK only uses one API Key at a time. It is recommeded to create API Keys for specific actions, and use them as needed.

For example, if using the Platform Devices API to search for mission critical devices, and the Endpoint Standard Live Response API to execute commands on those devices, generate two API Keys. The Platform API Key should have the Custom Access Level, and the Live Response Key should have the Live Response Access Level. Store these Keys with profile names, and reference the profile names when creating CBCloudAPI objects.

# import relevant modules
>>> from cbc_sdk.platform import Device
>>> from cbc_sdk import CBCloudAPI

# create Platform API object
>>> platform_api = CBCloudAPI(profile='platform')

# create Live Response API object
>>> live_response_api = CBCloudAPI(profile='live_response')

# search for specific devices with Platform Devices API
>>> important_devs ="MISSION_CRITICAL")

# execute commands with Live Response API
>>> for device in important_devs:
...      lr_session = live_response_api.live_response.request_session(
...      lr_session.create_process(r'cmd.exe /c "ping.exe"'))
...      lr_session.close()

Authentication Methods

With a File:

Credentials may be stored in a credentials.cbc file. With support for multiple profiles, this method makes it easy to manage multiple API Keys for different products and permission levels.

>>> cbc_api = CBCloudAPI('~/.carbonblack/myfile.cbc', profile='default')

With Windows Registry:

Windows Registry is a secure option for storing API credentials on Windows systems.

>>> provider = RegistryCredentialProvider()
>>> cbc_api = CBCloudAPI(credential_provider=provider, profile='default')

With an External Credential Provider:

Credential Providers allow for custom methods of loading API credentials. This method requires you to write your own Credential Provider.

>>> provider = MyCredentialProvider()
>>> cbc_api = CBCloudAPI(credential_provider=provider, profile='default')

Not Recommended:

At Runtime:

Credentials may be passed into CBCloudAPI() via keyword parameters. This method should be used with caution, taking care to not share your API credentials when managing code with source control.

>>> cbc_api = CBCloudAPI(url='', token=ABCD/1234,
...                         org_key='ABCDEFGH')

Not Recommended:

With Environmental Variables:

Environmental variables can be used for authentication, but pose a security risk. This method is not recommended unless absolutely necessary.

With a File

Credentials may be supplied in a file that resembles a Windows .INI file in structure, which allows for multiple “profiles” or sets of credentials to be supplied in a single file. The file format is backwards compatible with CBAPI, so older files can continue to be used. This is an example of a credentials file:



Individual profiles or sections are delimited in the file by placing their name within square brackets: [profile_name]. Within each section, individual credential values are supplied in a keyword=value format.

Unrecognized keywords are ignored.

By default, the CBC SDK looks for credentials files in the following locations:

  • The .carbonblack subdirectory of the current directory of the running process.
  • The .carbonblack subdirectory of the user’s home directory.
  • The /etc/carbonblack subdirectory on Unix, or the C:\Windows\carbonblack subdirectory on Windows.

Within each of these directories, the SDK first looks for the credentials.cbc file, then the credentials.psc file (the older name for the credentials file under CBAPI).

You can override the file search logic and specify the full pathname of the credentials file in the keyword parameter credential_file when creating the CBCloudAPI object.

In all cases, you will have to specify the name of the profile to be retrieved from the credentials file in the keyword parameter profile when creating the CBCloudAPI object.


>>> cbc_api = CBCloudAPI(credential_file='~/.carbonblack/myfile.cbc', profile='default')

Note on File Security: It is recommended that the credentials file be secured properly on Unix. It should be owned by the user running the process, as should the directory containing it, and neither one should specify any file permissions for “group” or “other.” In numeric terms, that means the file should have 400 or 600 permissions, and its containing directory should have 500 or 700 permissions. This is similar to securing configuration or key files for ssh. If these permissions are incorrect, a warning message will be logged; a future version of the CBC SDK will disallow access to files altogether if they do not have the correct permissions.

Credential files cannot be properly secured in this manner under Windows; if they are used in that environment, a warning message will be logged.

With Windows Registry

CBC SDK also provides the ability to use the Windows Registry to supply credentials, a method which is more secure on Windows than other methods.

N.B.: Presently, to use the Windows Registry, you must supply its credential provider as an “external” credential provider. A future version of the CBC SDK will move to using this as a default provider when running on Windows.

By default, registry entries are stored under the key HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\VMware Carbon Black\Cloud Credentials. Under this key, there may be multiple subkeys, each of which specifies a “profile” (as with credential files). Within these subkeys, the following named values may be specified:

* Required

Keyword Value Type Default
url * REG_SZ  
token * REG_SZ  
org_key * REG_SZ  
ssl_verify REG_DWORD 1
ssl_verify_hostname REG_DWORD 1
ignore_system_proxy REG_DWORD 0
ssl_force_tls_1_2 REG_DWORD 0
ssl_cert_file REG_SZ  
proxy REG_SZ  
integration_name REG_SZ  

Unrecognized named values are ignored.

To use the Registry credential provider, create an instance of it, then pass the reference to that instance in the credential_provider keyword parameter when creating CBCloudAPI. As with credential files, the name of the profile to be retrieved from the Registry should be specified in the keyword parameter profile.


>>> provider = RegistryCredentialProvider()
>>> cbc_api = CBCloudAPI(credential_provider=provider, profile='default')

Advanced Usage: The parameters keypath and userkey to RegistryCredentialProvider may be used to control the exact location of the “base” registry key where the sections of credentials are located. The keypath parameter allows specification of the path from HKEY_CURRENT_USER where the base registry key is located. If userkey, which is True by default, is False, the path will be interpreted as being rooted at HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE rather than HKEY_CURRENT_USER.


>>> provider = RegistryCredentialProvider('Software\\Contoso\\My CBC Application')
>>> cbc_api = CBCloudAPI(credential_provider=provider, profile='default')

Note the use of doubled backslashes to properly escape them under Python.

With an External Credential Provider

Credentials may also be supplied by writing a class that conforms to the CredentialProvider interface protocol. When creating CBCloudAPI, pass a reference to a CredentialProvider object in the credential_provider keyword parameter. Then pass the name of the profile you want to retrieve from the provider object using the keyword parameter profile.


>>> provider = MyCredentialProvider()
>>> cbc_api = CBCloudAPI(credential_provider=provider, profile='default')

Details of writing a credential provider may be found in the Developing a Custom Credential Provider document.

At Runtime

The credentials may be passed into the CBCloudAPI object when it is created via the keyword parameters url, token, org_key, and (optionally) ssl_verify and integration_name.


>>> api = CBCloudAPI(url='', token='ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWX/12345678',
...                  org_key='A1B2C3D4', ssl_verify=False, integration_name='MyScript/1.0')

The integration_name may be specified even if using another credential provider. If specified as a parameter, this overrides any integration name specified by means of the credential provider.

With Environmental Variables

The credentials may be supplied to CBC SDK via the environment variables CBC_URL, CBC_TOKEN, CBC_ORG_KEY, and CBC_SSL_VERIFY. For backwards compatibility with CBAPI, the environment variables CBAPI_URL, CBAPI_TOKEN, CBAPI_ORG_KEY, and CBAPI_SSL_VERIFY may also be used; if both are specified, the newer CBC_xxx environment variables override their corresponding CBAPI_xxx equivalents. To use the environment variables, they must be set before the application is run (at least CBC_URL or CBAPI_URL, and CBC_TOKEN or CBAPI_TOKEN), and the credential_file keyword parameter to CBCloudAPI must be either None or left unspecified. (The profile keyword parameter will be ignored.)

N.B.: Passing credentials via the environment can be insecure, and, if this method is used, a warning message to that effect will be generated in the log.

Explanation of API Credential Components

When supplying API credentials to the SDK at runtime, with a file, or with Windows Registry, the credentials include these components:

* Required

Keyword Definition Default
url * The URL used to access the Carbon Black Cloud.  
token * The access token to authenticate with. Same structure as X-Auth-Token defined in the Developer Network Authentication Guide. Derived from an API Key’s Secret Key and API ID.  
org_key * The organization key specifying which organization to work with.  
ssl_verify A Boolean value (see below) indicating whether or not to validate the SSL connection. True
ssl_verify_hostname A Boolean value (see below) indicating whether or not to verify the host name of the server being connected to. True
ignore_system_proxy A Boolean value (see below). If this is True, any system proxy settings will be ignored in making the connection to the server. False
ssl_force_tls_1_2 A Boolean value (see below). If this is True, the connection will be forced to use TLS 1.2 rather than any later version. False
ssl_cert_file The name of an optional certificate file used to validate the certificates of the SSL connection. If not specified, the standard system certificate verification will be used.  
proxy If specified, this is the name of a proxy host to be used in making the connection.  
integration_name The name of the integration to use these credentials. The string may optionally end with a slash character, followed by the integration’s version number. Passed as part of the User-Agent: HTTP header on all requests made by the SDK.  

When supplying API credentials to the SDK with environmental variables, the credentials include these components:

Alternative keywords are available to maintain backwards compatibility with CBAPI.

Boolean Values

Boolean values are specified by using the strings true, yes, on, or 1 to represent a True value, or the strings false, no, off, or 0 to represent a False value. All of these are case-insensitive. Any other string value specified will result in an error.

For example, to disable SSL connection validation, any of the following would work: