Installing and Customizing

Installing DC/OS Apache NiFi from the UI or the CLI

DC/OS Apache NiFi service is available in the Universe and can be installed using either the UI or the DC/OS CLI.

The default DC/OS Apache NiFi Service installation provides reasonable defaults for trying out the service, but that may not be sufficient for production use. You may require different configurations depending on the context of the deployment.


  • If you are using DC/OS Enterprise, you may need to provision a service account before installing DC/OS NiFi Service. Only someone with superuser permission can create the service account.

  • In permissive security mode a service account is optional.

  • The disabled security mode does not require a service account.

  • Your cluster must have at least three private nodes.

A complete guide to Configuring DC/OS Access for NiFi can be found here.

Installing from the DC/OS CLI

To start a basic test cluster of DC/OS Apache NiFi Service, run the following command on the DC/OS CLI. DC/OS Enterprise users must follow additional instructions.

dcos package install nifi

This command creates a new instance with the default name nifi. Two instances cannot share the same name, so if you install additional instances beyond the default instance you must customize the name at install time for each additional instance. However, the application can be installed using the same name in case of foldered installation, wherein application can have same but in different folders, eg., folder1/nifi and folder2/nifi

All DC/OS Apache NiFi Service CLI commands have a --name argument, allowing you to specify which instance to query. If you do not specify a service name, the CLI assumes a default value matching the package name, such as nifi. The default value for --name can be customized via the DC/OS CLI configuration:

dcos nifi --name=nifi <cmd>

You can specify a custom configuration in an options.json file and pass it to dcos package install using the --options parameter.

dcos package install nifi --options=options.json

For more information on building the options.json file, see DC/OS documentation for service configuration access.

Installing from the DC/OS UI

Alternatively, you can install DC/OS NiFi Service from the DC/OS UI. Select the app from the Catalog and choose Deploy.

If you install Apache NiFi from the DC/OS UI, the dcos nifi CLI commands are not automatically installed to your workstation. They may be manually installed using the DC/OS CLI:

dcos package install nifi --cli

Installing multiple instances

By default, the Apache NiFi service is installed with a service name of nifi. You may specify a different name using a custom service configuration as follows:

    "service": {
        "name": "nifi-other"

When the above JSON configuration is passed to the package install nifi command via the --options argument, the new service will use the name specified in that JSON configuration:

dcos package install nifi --options=nifi-other.json

Multiple instances of Apache NiFi may be installed on your DC/OS cluster by customizing the name of each instance. For example, you might have one instance of Apache NiFi named nifi-staging and another named nifi-prod, each with its own custom configuration.

After specifying a custom name for your instance, it can be reached using dcos nifi CLI commands or directly over HTTP as described below.

IMPORTANT: The service name cannot be changed after initial install. Changing the service name would require installing a new instance of the service against the new name, then copying over any data as necessary to the new instance.

Installing into folders

In DC/OS 1.10 and later, services may be installed into folders by specifying a slash-delimited service name. The example below will install the service under a path of foldered => path => to => nifi.

    "service": {
        "name": "/foldered/path/to/nifi"

It can then be reached using dcos nifi CLI commands or directly over HTTP as described below.

IMPORTANT: The service folder location cannot be changed after initial install. Changing the service location would require installing a new instance of the service against the new location, then copying over any data as necessary to the new instance.

Addressing named instances

After you have installed the service under a custom name or under a folder, you can access it from all dcos nifi CLI commands using the --name argument. By default, the --name value defaults to the name of the package, or nifi.

For example, if you had an instance named nifi-dev, the following command would invoke a pod list command against it:

dcos nifi --name=nifi-dev pod list

You can make the same query over HTTP:

curl -H "Authorization:token=$auth_token" <dcos_url>/service/nifi-dev/v1/pod

Likewise, if you had an instance in a folder like /foldered/path/to/nifi, the following command would invoke a pod list command against it:

dcos nifi --name=/foldered/path/to/nifi pod list

You can make the same query over HTTP:

curl -H "Authorization:token=$auth_token" <dcos_url>/service/foldered/path/to/nifi-dev/v1/pod

NOTE: You may add a `-v` (verbose) argument to any `dcos nifi` command to see the underlying HTTP queries that are being made. This can be a useful tool to see where the CLI is getting its information. In practice, `dcos nifi` commands are a thin wrapper around an HTTP interface provided by the DC/OS Apache NiFi Service itself.

Virtual networks

DC/OS NiFi Service supports deployment on virtual networks on DC/OS, allowing each container (task) to have its own IP address and not use port resources on the agent machines. This can be specified by passing the following configuration during installation:

    "service": {
        "virtual_network_enabled": true

NOTE: Once the service is deployed on a virtual network, it cannot be updated to use the host network.

Minimal installation

For development purposes, you may wish to install Apache NiFi on a local DC/OS cluster. For this, you can use dcos-docker or dcos-vagrant. To start a minimal cluster with a single node, create a JSON options file named sample-nifi-minimal.json:

    "node": {
    "count": 1,
    "mem": 512,
    "cpu": 0.5

The following command creates a cluster using sample-nifi-minimal.json:

dcos package install nifi --options=sample-nifi-minimal.json

Example custom installation

Customize the defaults by creating a JSON file. Then, pass it to dcos package install using the --options parameter.

Sample JSON options file named sample-nifi-custom.json:

"node": {
    "count": 1,
    "cpus": 1
"service": {
    "name": "test/integration/nifi",
    "security": {
        "kerberos": {
            "enabled": true,
            "cn_dn_node_identity": "testintegrationnifi"
        "tls_ssl": {
            "enable": true
    "service_account": "dcosnifi",
    "service_account_secret": "dcosnifisecret",
    "virtual_network_enabled": true

The following command creates a cluster using sample-nifi.json:

dcos package install nifi --options=sample-nifi-custom.json

Store your custom configuration in source control.

Alternatively, you can perform a custom installation from the DC/OS UI. Choose ADVANCED INSTALLATION at install time.

Integration with DC/OS access controls

In DC/OS Enterprise 1.10 and later, you can integrate your SDK-based service with DC/OS ACLs to restrict users and groups to certain services. Do this by installing your service into a folder, and then restricting access to some number of folders. Folders also allow you to namespace services; for instance, staging/nifi and production/nifi.


  1. In the DC/OS GUI, create a group, then add a user to the group. Or, just create a user. Choose Organization > Groups > + or Organization > Users > +. If you create a group, you must also create a user and add them to the group.

  2. Give the user permissions for the folder where you will install your service. In this example, we are creating a user called developer, who will have access to the /testing folder.

  3. Select the group or user you created. Select ADD PERMISSION and then toggle to INSERT PERMISSION STRING. Add each of the following permissions to your user or group, and then click ADD PERMISSIONS.

dcos:adminrouter:service:marathon full
dcos:service:marathon:marathon:services:/testing full
dcos:adminrouter:ops:mesos full
dcos:adminrouter:ops:slave full
  1. Install your service into a folder called test. Go to the Catalog, then search for nifi.

  2. Click CONFIGURE and change the service name to /testing/nifi, then deploy. The slashes in your service name are interpreted as folders. You are deploying nifi in the /testing folder. Any user with access to the /testing folder will have access to the service.

IMPORTANT: Services cannot be renamed. Because the location of the service is specified in the name, you cannot move services between folders. DC/OS 1.9 does not accept slashes in service names. You may be able to create the service, but you will encounter unexpected problems.

Interacting with your foldered service

  1. Interact with your foldered service via the DC/OS CLI with this flag: --name=/path/to/myservice.
  2. To interact with your foldered service over the web directly, use http://<dcos-url>/service/path/to/myservice. For example: http://<dcos-url>/service/testing/nifi/v1/endpoints.

Placement constraints

Placement constraints allow you to customize where a service is deployed in the DC/OS cluster. Depending on the service, some or all components may be configurable using Marathon operators (reference). For example, [[“hostname”, “UNIQUE”]] ensures that at most one pod instance is deployed per agent.

A common task is to specify a list of whitelisted systems to deploy to. To achieve this, use the following syntax for the placement constraint:

[["hostname", "LIKE", "||"]]

You must include spare capacity in this list, so that if one of the whitelisted systems goes down, there is still enough room to repair your service (via pod replace) without requiring that system.


In order to define placement constraints as part of an install or update of a service, provide them as a JSON encoded string. For example, you can define a placement constraint in an options file as follows:

cat options.json
    "hello": {
    "placement": "[[\"hostname\", \"UNIQUE\"]]"

You can refer to this file to install a nifi service.

dcos package install hello-world --options=options.json

Likewise, you can refer to this file in order to update a nifi service.

dcos nifi update start --options=options.json