Authentication for Databricks Asset Bundles

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This article describes how to configure authentication for Databricks Asset Bundles. See What are Databricks Asset Bundles?.

You deploy and run Databricks Asset Bundles run within the context of two types of authentication scenarios: attended and unattended:

  • Attended authentication scenarios are manual workflows, for example, using your web browser on your local machine to log in to your target Databricks workspace when prompted by the Databricks CLI.

  • Unattended authentication scenarios are automated and CI/CD workflows, for example when using CI/CD systems such as GitHub.

The following sections recommend the Databricks authentication types and settings to use for Databricks Asset Bundles, based on these two types of authentication scenarios.

Attended authentication

For attended authentication scenarios with Databricks Asset Bundles, Databricks recommends that you use the following Databricks authentication types, in the following order of preference:

For more information about these Databricks authentication types, see Supported Databricks authentication types.

For storing authentication settings for attended authentication scenarios, Databricks recommends that you use Databricks configuration profiles on your local development machine. Configuration profiles enable you to quickly switch among different Databricks authentication contexts to do rapid local development among multiple Databricks workspaces. With profiles, you can use the --profile or -p options to specify a particular profile when running the bundle validate, deploy, run, and destroy commands with the Databricks CLI.

Databricks supports but does not recommend, the use of the profile mapping within the workspace mapping to specify the profile to use for each target workspace in your bundle configuration files. Hard-coded mappings make your bundle configuration files less reusable across projects.

Unattended authentication

For unattended authentication scenarios with Databricks Asset Bundles, Databricks recommends that you use the following Databricks authentication types, in the following order of preference:

For more information about these Databricks authentication types, see Supported Databricks authentication types.

For unattended authentication scenarios, Databricks recommends using environment variables to store Databricks authentication settings in your target CI/CD system. This is because CI/CD systems are typically optimized to work with authentication settings stored in environment variables. These CI/CD systems often don’t work with other approaches, such as Databricks configuration profiles, or they might work with profiles in unexpected or insecure ways.

For Databricks Asset Bundles projects used in CI/CD systems designed to work with multiple Databricks workspaces (for example, three separate but related development, staging, and production workspaces), Databricks recommends that you use service principals for authentication and that you give one service principal access to all participating workspaces. This enables you to use the same environment variables across all of the project’s workspaces without frequently changing those variables’ original settings.

Databricks supports but does not recommend, the use of hard-coded, authentication-related settings in the workspace mapping for target workspaces in your bundle configuration files. Hard-coded settings make your bundles configuration less reusable across projects and risk unnecessarily exposing sensitive information such as Databricks service principal IDs.

For unattended authentication scenarios, you must also install the Databricks CLI on the associated compute resources, as follows:

OAuth machine-to-machine (M2M) authentication

To set up OAuth M2M authentication, see OAuth machine-to-machine (M2M) authentication.

The list of environment variables to set for unattended authentication is in the workspace-level operations coverage of the “Environment” section of OAuth machine-to-machine (M2M) authentication. To set environment variables, see the documentation for your operating system or CI/CD system provider.

OAuth user-to-machine (U2M) authentication

To set up OAuth U2M authentication, see the “CLI” section in OAuth user-to-machine (U2M) authentication.

For attended authentication scenarios, completing the instructions in the “CLI” section of OAuth user-to-machine (U2M) authentication automatically creates a Databricks configuration profile for you.

Databricks personal access token authentication

To create a Databricks personal access token, see Databricks personal access token authentication.

For attended authentication scenarios, to create a Databricks configuration profile, see the “CLI” section in Databricks personal access token authentication.

The list of environment variables to set for unattended authentication is in the workspace-level operations coverage in the “Environment” section of Databricks personal access token authentication. To set environment variables, see the documentation for your operating system or CI/CD system provider.

Basic authentication (legacy)

For attended authentication scenarios, to create a Databricks configuration profile, see the workspace-level operations coverage in the “Profile” section of Basic authentication (legacy).