This document describes how to set up a self-contained deployment of Inrupt Enterprise Solid Server (ESS). The installation uses Minikube (version 1.2.1 or earlier) to run a single-node Kubernetes cluster inside a Virtual Machine (VM).


Although the tutorial uses Minikube for its development/testing environment, you may choose to run ESS on other Kubernetes environment.

Pod Spaces (Alpha)

Inrupt provides hosted versions of the Enterprise Solid Server, eliminating the installation overhead. For more information, see Inrupt Pod Spaces.


The following diagram provides an overview of the ESS services and the backend services they use. This self-contained deployment installs the backend services in your cluster.


Operating System#

This guide provides installation instructions for the following operating systems:

  • Ubuntu

  • macOS


Entitlement Token#

To login to Inrupt’s private Docker registry and download the reference ESS Kubernetes configuration files and ESS Docker images, your enterprise needs to obtain an entitlement token from Inrupt.

For inquiries (including pricing inquiries) about obtaining the token, you can either:

Package Manager#

Update the list of available packages and their versions, and upgrade the installed packages:

sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade


If you encounter issues using the latest versions of your packages, it may be that, after troubleshooting the issues, you may need to use an older version of a package or packages.

Archive Extraction Tool#

An archive extraction (i.e., unzip) tool is required to extract downloaded .zip files.

To install unzip, run:

sudo apt install unzip

Minikube and Hypervisor#

This tutorial uses Minikube for the Kubernetes environment. In addition to Minikube, you will need a Hypervisor to run a Minikube virtual machine (VM).

Known Issue

ESS 1.1 installation on Minikube requires version 1.21 or earlier.



To manage the Kubernetes cluster, install kubectl (if not installed). Use the directions at


New in version 1.0.9.

The installation scripts use Kustomize to configure the deployment. If Kustomize is not installed, refer to its official site for download instructions.

Once downloaded, add kustomize to your PATH.


Install the latest Kustomize rather than relying on the version of Kustomize bundled with other utilities, such as kubectl.

JSON Web Key Values#

ESS installation prompts for two JSON Web Key (JWK) values (base64-encoded) during initialization.

For a non-production environment, you can use Inrupt’s JWK generator Docker image.

  1. To run the JWK generator Docker image, you need to have Docker installed and running.

  2. Open a terminal shell and login to Inrupt’s private Docker registry. When prompted for your password, enter your entitlement token:

    docker login --username <userid>
  3. On a terminal shell, run the following docker command to generate an Elliptic Curve (EC) JWK for your OpenID service:

    docker run -t EC  | base64 -w0
  4. Run the command again for the second JWK for the WebSocket service:

    docker run -t EC  | base64 -w0

The installer script will prompt for the two JWK values for use during the initialization process.

OIDC-Compliant Identity Provider#

ESS integrates with your OpenID Connect (OIDC) compliant Identity Provider (IdP).

Refer to your IdP’s official site to set up an OIDC application. When configuring the application, set the redirect URI to https://broker.<ESS Domain>/callback.


Contact Inrupt Support Center for guidance setting up an OIDC application with your IdP.


Step 1: Start Kubernetes Cluster#

Non-Minikube Environments

Although the tutorial uses Minikube for local development/testing, you may choose to use another Kubernetes environment for your ESS deployment.

If you are using a different Kubernetes environment, you must adjust the steps to enable various capabilities (Ingress controller and certificate management controller) for your environment. To configure your Kubernetes environment, refer to your Kubernetes-specific documentation to enable these features.

The Kubernetes cluster runs within a Minikube virtual machine (VM).

Known Issues

If using Minikube, ESS 1.1 installation on Minikube requires version 1.21 or earlier. Ensure your Minikube version is 1.21 or earlier.

  1. Open a Terminal window.

  2. Start Minikube with the minimum recommended resources.

    minikube start --vm-driver=virtualbox --cpus 8 --memory 16384 --disk-size=50GB
  3. Verify the status of the Kubernetes cluster:

    minikube status

    The operation should return output that resembles the following:

    type: Control Plane
    host: Running
    kubelet: Running
    apiserver: Running
    kubeconfig: Configured
  4. Verify access to Kubernetes:

    kubectl get all

    The operation should return output that resembles the following:

    NAME                 TYPE        CLUSTER-IP   EXTERNAL-IP   PORT(S)   AGE
    service/kubernetes   ClusterIP    <none>        443/TCP   48m
  5. For service routing, you need an Ingress controller to manage external access to the services in the cluster. Enable the NGINX Ingress controller:

    minikube addons enable ingress


    The operation can take up to a minute.

  6. Verify that the NGINX Ingress controller is running:

    kubectl get pods -n ingress-nginx

    The operation should return output that resembles the following:

    NAME                                         READY   STATUS      RESTARTS   AGE
    ingress-nginx-admission-create-w7mpj         0/1     Completed   1          24h
    ingress-nginx-admission-patch-prmjs          0/1     Completed   1          24h
    ingress-nginx-controller-59b45fb494-sf4t4    1/1     Running     1          24h
  7. Install cert-manager to your Kubernetes cluster:

    kubectl apply -f
  8. Verify that cert-manager is running:

    kubectl get pods -n cert-manager

    The operation should return output that resembles the following:

    NAME                                         READY   STATUS      RESTARTS   AGE
    cert-manager-7c6f78c46d-96f48                1/1     Running     1          24h
    cert-manager-cainjector-668d9c86df-k2q82     1/1     Running     1          24h
    cert-manager-webhook-764b556954-qz6cz        1/1     Running     1          24h

Step 2: Download the ESS Installer and Configuration Scripts#

  1. Create the ESS directory (ess) and change to the directory. For example, to create the ESS directory under your home directory:

    mkdir ~/ess && cd ~/ess
  2. Download the .zip file containing the latest ESS installation and configuration scripts. Replace <ENTITLEMENT_TOKEN> with the entitlement token provided by Inrupt:

    curl -O<ENTITLEMENT_TOKEN>/release/raw/names/ESS-Kubernetes-Deployment/versions/latest/


    To download a specific version instead of the latest version, change latest to the specific version in the curl command.

  3. Unzip the file:


Step 3: Initialize ESS Environment Variables#

  1. Go to the deployment directory:

    cd deployment
  2. Initialize your Minikube environment, substituting your environment (such as dev, testing, etc.) for <env>:

    ./scripts/ -e <env> -c init

    The script prompts for various values needed to build your deployment configuration files and stores these values in an ESS config file <env>.config.

    Initializing ESS version [1.1.0] for Minikube environment.
    Enter your token for Inrupts private docker registry:
    Enter an email to be used as the owner of HTTPS certificates (used for expiry notifications):
    Enter a name for the environment [dev]:
    Enter the domain where you are hosting ESS []:
    Enter the OpenID broker version [latest]:
    Enter your OIDC authentication server URL (e.g. Cognito):
    Enter your OIDC client ID:
    Enter your OIDC credentials:
    Enter a password for the mongo used to store sessions [-auto-generated-]:
    Enter your OpenId JSON Web Key (JWK) for signing (it should be base-64 encoded):
    Enter a different JSON Web Key (JWK) for signing tokens for the WebSocket service (it should be base-64 encoded):
    Enter a password for the mTLS Keystore [-auto-generated-]:

    Enter the appropriate values needed to build your deployment configuration files. For example, for the JSON Web Key values, enter the values generated during the prerequisite step.

    The init operation finishes with a message similar to the following, where <env> value is substituted with your <env> value (e.g., dev, testing):

    Created ESS config [<env>.config].

    For sake of simplicity, the remaining sections assume the <env> value of dev; i.e.

    Created ESS config [dev.config].

Step 4: Install ESS Services#


For sake of simplicity, this section assumes the <env> value of dev (and the existence of the dev.config file). If your environment value differs, pass that value to the script’s environment -e option.

  1. Run the file to build your ESS Minikube configuration files for your environment. The example assumes dev environment.

    ./scripts/ -e dev -c build

    The build operation backups the previous deployment, if any.

  2. Run the file to deploy ESS:

    ./scripts/ -e dev -c install

    The prints the following line upon success:

    ESS deployment installed successfully!


    If the deploy operation does not complete successfully, you can safely retry the operation as it is idempotent. For example, if you encounter an error like error: unable to recognize "STDIN": ..., you can rerun the install command.

    If the retry also does not succeed, see also Troubleshoot Installation.

    Warning: Self-signed Certificates

    The script creates self-signed certificates. These self-signed certificates are for development purposes only. In production, ESS should be run with certificates from an official Certificate Authority (CA). For an example of how you can customize your deployment to use your production certificates, see Use Official Certificate Authority.

  3. You can view the ESS components and services that are running:

    kubectl -n ess get all

Step 5: Add ESS Domains#

ESS exposes the various services for external access. Edit the /etc/hosts file on your local machine to map the Minikube Internet Protocol (IP) address with your ESS service domains.

  1. Find the IP address of the Minikube VM:

    minikube ip

    The operation should return your Minikube IP Address.

  2. Edit the /etc/hosts file to add the service domains. Replace <Minikube IP> and <DOMAIN> with your values:

    <Minikube IP> access.<DOMAIN> identity.<DOMAIN> fragments.<DOMAIN>  registration.<DOMAIN> ldp.<DOMAIN> notification.<DOMAIN> signup.<DOMAIN>  websocket.<DOMAIN> <DOMAIN> id.<DOMAIN>

    To edit the /etc/hosts file, you need administrator privileges.


If you delete the Minikube VM and rebuild a new VM, your Minikube IP could change and you will need to update the hosts file with the new IP value.

Step 6: Accept Self-Signed Certificates#


The self-signed certificates are for development purposes only. In production, ESS should be run with certificates from an official Certificate Authority (CA). For an example of how you can customize your deployment to use your production certificates, see Use Official Certificate Authority

If you are using self-signed certificates in your development environment and you encounter self-signed certificate warnings when accessing these services, accept them.


See also Monitoring.

Verify Installation#

  1. Open a web browser to https://<DOMAIN>/verify.html, substituting your domain for <DOMAIN>.

  2. On the displayed Enterprise Solid Server Deployment Tests page, enter:

    1. Identity Provider: URL to the Solid OpenID Service (e.g., https://id.<DOMAIN>).

    2. LDP Storage Server: URL of the LDP Storage service (e.g., https://<DOMAIN>).

  3. Click the Begin Tests button to run the first set of tests.

    When these tests complete, you should see the results.

  4. If all the initial tests pass, click on the Authenticate button. You should be redirected to a Provider selection page.

    You may encounter an Authorization page. If so, click Authorize to continue withe the test.

  5. Select a provider with whom you have an existing account and the specific account use for the login.

  6. Once logged in, you are redirected to a standard OIDC Authorization screen.

  7. Click the Authorize button. You should be redirected back to the ESS Server Verification webpage, and the second-phase set of tests should all run automatically.

    If all of these checks are green, then the deployment was successful. If there are errors, contact Service Desk for support.

Access via Solid Application#

You can validate the installation process by accessing the deployed ESS from an application:

  1. Open a web browser to

  2. In the login dialog that appears, enter https://broker.<DOMAIN>.

  3. Click the Log In button.

Restart ESS#

Restart Running ESS Components#

To restart the ESS components running in the ess namespace:

  1. Go to the ess/deployment directory.

    cd ~/ess/deployment
  2. Run the script:


Restart an ESS Service#

  1. To restart a specific ESS service if it is not running, run the following command, specifying the deployment to restart:

    kubectl rollout restart <service app deployment>
  2. To check the status of the rollout, run the following command, specifying the deployment:

    kubectl rollout status <service app deployment>

Delete ESS#

This operation deletes the ESS components and namespace from the Kubernetes cluster.

  1. Go to the ess/deployment directory:

    cd ~/ess/deployment
  2. To delete ESS components and the ess namespace from the Kubernetes cluster, run the script, passing in the environment value specified during the installation initialization (e.g., dev, testing, etc.):

    ./scripts/ <env>

    When prompted for confirmation, enter y to continue.

  3. To verify that all ESS components and services are gone, run the following command:

    kubectl get namespaces

    The ess namespace will not appear among the returned namespaces.

Stop/Start/Delete Minikube#

Stop Minikube#

To stop Minikube, run the following command:

minikube stop

This command shuts down the Kubernetes cluster and Minikube.

Start Minikube#

To restart Minikube, run the following commands:

minikube start

kubectl config set-context --current --namespace=ess

The operation returns a message stating Context "minikube" modified.

Minikube and all related services are booted back up as before.

Delete Minikube#

To fully delete the Kubernetes cluster and Minikube, run the following command:

minikube delete

This command removes everything, and it will require a full rebuild to spin the environment back up again.