Data at Rest Encryption

Data security is a concern for institutions and organizations. Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) or Data at Rest Encryption encrypts data files. Data at rest is any data which is not accessed or changed frequently, stored on different types of storage devices. Encryption ensures that if an unauthorized user accesses the data files from the file system, the user cannot read contents.

If the user uses master key encryption, the MySQL keyring plugin stores the InnoDB master key, used for the master key encryption implemented by MySQL. The master key is also used to encrypt redo logs, and undo logs, along with the tablespaces.

The InnoDB tablespace encryption has the following components:

  • The database instance has a master key for tablespaces and a master key for binary log encryption.
  • Each tablespace has a tablespace key. The key is used to encrypt the Tablespace data pages. Encrypted tablespace keys are written on tablespace header. In the master key implementation, the tablespace key cannot be changed unless you rebuild the table.

Two separate keys allow the master key to be rotated in a minimal operation. When the master key is rotated, each tablespace key is decrypted and re-encrypted with the new master key. Only the first page of every tablespace (.ibd) file is read and written during the key rotation.

An InnoDB tablespace file is comprised of multiple logical and physical pages. Page 0 is the tablespace header page and keeps the metadata for the tablespace. The encryption information is stored on page 0 and the tablespace key is encrypted.

A buffer pool page is not encrypted. An encrypted page is decrypted at the I/O layer and added to the buffer pool and used to access the data. The page is encrypted by the I/O layer before the page is flushed to disk.


Percona XtraBackup version 8 supports the backup of encrypted general tablespaces. Features which are not Generally Available (GA) in Percona Server for MySQL are not supported in version 8.

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