OPA can periodically download bundles of policy and data from remote HTTP servers. The policies and data are loaded on the fly without requiring a restart of OPA. Once the policies and data have been loaded, they are enforced immediately. Policies and data loaded from bundles are accessible via the standard OPA REST API.

Bundles provide an alternative to pushing policies into OPA via the REST APIs. By configuring OPA to download bundles from a remote HTTP server, you can ensure that OPA has an up-to-date copy of policies and data required for enforcement at all times.

By default, the OPA REST APIs will prevent you from modifying policy and data loaded via bundles. If you need to load policy and data from multiple sources, see the section below.

See the Configuration Reference for configuration details.

Bundle Service API

OPA expects the service to expose an API endpoint that serves bundles. The bundle API should allow clients to download bundles at an arbitrary URL. In combination with a service’s url path.

GET /<service path>/<resource> HTTP/1.1

If the bundle exists, the server should respond with an HTTP 200 OK status followed by a gzipped tarball in the message body.

HTTP/1.1 200 OK
Content-Type: application/gzip

Enable bundle downloading via configuration. For example:

  - name: acmecorp
    url: https://example.com/service/v1
        token: "bGFza2RqZmxha3NkamZsa2Fqc2Rsa2ZqYWtsc2RqZmtramRmYWxkc2tm"

    service: acmecorp
    resource: somedir/bundle.tar.gz
      min_delay_seconds: 10
      max_delay_seconds: 20

Using this configuration, OPA will fetch bundles from https://example.com/service/v1/somedir/bundle.tar.gz.

The URL is constructed as follows:

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
services[0].url                resource

If the bundles[_].resource field is not defined, the value defaults to bundles/<name> where the name is the key value in the configuration. For the example above this is authz and would default to bundles/authz.

Bundle names can have any valid YAML characters in them, including /. This can be useful when relying on default resource behavior with a name like authz/bundle.tar.gz which results in a resource of bundles/authz/bundle.tar.gz.

See the following section for details on the bundle file format.

Note: The bundle config keyword will still work with the current versions of OPA, but has been deprecated. It is highly recommended to switch to the bundles configuration.


Services implementing the Bundle Service API should set the HTTP Etag header in bundle responses to identify the revision of the bundle. OPA will include the Etag value in the If-None-Match header of bundle requests. Services can check the If-None-Match header and reply with HTTP 304 Not Modified if the bundle has not changed since the last update.

Bundle File Format

Bundle files are gzipped tarballs that contain policies and data. The data files in the bundle must be organized hierarchically into directories inside the tarball.

The hierarchical organization indicates to OPA where to load the data files into the the data Document.

You can list the content of a bundle with tar.

$ tar tzf bundle.tar.gz

In this example, the bundle contains one policy file (authz.rego) and two data files (roles/bindings/data.json and roles/permissions/data.json).

Bundle files may contain an optional .manifest file that stores bundle metadata. The file should contain a JSON serialized object, with the following fields:

  • If the bundle service is capable of serving different revisions of the same bundle, the service should include a top-level revision field containing a string value that identifies the bundle revision.

  • If you expect to load additional data into OPA from outside the bundle (e.g., via OPA’s HTTP API) you should include a top-level roots field containing of path prefixes that declare the scope of the bundle. See the section below on managing data from multiple sources. If the roots field is not included in the manifest it defaults to [""] which means that ALL data and policy must come from the bundle.

  • OPA will only load data files named data.json or data.yaml (which contain JSON or YAML respectively). Other JSON and YAML files will be ignored.

  • The *.rego policy files must be valid Modules

YAML data loaded into OPA is converted to JSON. Since JSON is a subset of YAML, you are not allowed to use binary or null keys in objects and boolean and number keys are converted to strings. Also, YAML !!binary tags are not supported.

For example, this manifest specifies a revision (which happens to be a Git commit hash) and a set of roots for the bundle contents. In this case, the manifest declares that it owns the roots data.roles and data.http.example.authz.

  "revision" : "7864d60dd78d748dbce54b569e939f5b0dc07486",
  "roots": ["roles", "http/example/authz"]

Multiple Sources of Policy and Data

By default, when OPA is configured to download policy and data from a bundle service, the entire content of OPA’s policy and data cache is defined by the bundle. However, if you need to load OPA with policy and data from multiple sources, you can implement your bundle service to generate bundles that are scoped to a subset of OPA’s policy and data cache.

We recommend that whenever possible, you implement policy and data aggregation centrally, however, in some cases that’s not possible (e.g., due to latency requirements.)

To scope bundles to a subset of OPA’s policy and data cache, include a top-level roots key in the bundle that defines the roots of the data namespace that are owned by the bundle.

For example, the following manifest would declare two roots (acmecorp/policy and acmecorp/oncall):

    "roots": ["acmecorp/policy", "acmecorp/oncall"]

If OPA was loaded with a bundle containing this manifest it would only erase and overwrite policy and data under these roots. Policy and data loaded under other roots is left intact.

When OPA loads scoped bundles, it validates that:

  • The roots are not overlapping (e.g., a/b/c and a/b are overlapped and will result in an error.) Note: This is not enforced across multiple bundles. Only within the same bundle manifest.

  • The policies in the bundle are contained under the roots. This is determined by inspecting the package statement in each of the policy files. For example, given the manifest above, it would be an error to include a policy file containing package acmecorp.other because acmecorp.other is not contained in either of the roots.

  • The data in the bundle is contained under the roots.

If bundle validation fails, OPA will report the validation error via the Status API.

Warning! When using multiple bundles the roots are not checked against other bundles. It is the responsibility of the bundle creator to ensure the manifest claims roots that are unique to that bundle! There are no ordering guarantees for which bundle loads first and takes over some root.

Debugging Your Bundles

When you run OPA, you can provide bundle files over the command line. This allows you to manually check that your bundles include all of the files that you intended and that they are structured correctly. For example:

opa run bundle.tar.gz