Quickstart: Set and retrieve a secret from Azure Key Vault using Azure CLI

In this quickstart, you create a key vault in Azure Key Vault with Azure CLI. Azure Key Vault is a cloud service that works as a secure secrets store. You can securely store keys, passwords, certificates, and other secrets. For more information on Key Vault you may review the Overview. Azure CLI is used to create and manage Azure resources using commands or scripts. Once that you have completed that, you will store a secret.

If you don't have an Azure subscription, create a free account before you begin.

Prerequisites

  • Use the Bash environment in Azure Cloud Shell.

    Launch Cloud Shell in a new window

  • If you prefer, install the Azure CLI to run CLI reference commands.

    • If you're using a local installation, sign in to the Azure CLI by using the az login command. To finish the authentication process, follow the steps displayed in your terminal. For additional sign-in options, see Sign in with the Azure CLI.

    • When you're prompted, install Azure CLI extensions on first use. For more information about extensions, see Use extensions with the Azure CLI.

    • Run az version to find the version and dependent libraries that are installed. To upgrade to the latest version, run az upgrade.

  • This quickstart requires version 2.0.4 or later of the Azure CLI. If using Azure Cloud Shell, the latest version is already installed.

Create a resource group

A resource group is a logical container into which Azure resources are deployed and managed. Use the az group create command to create a resource group named myResourceGroup in the eastus location.

az group create --name "myResourceGroup" -l "EastUS"

Create a key vault

Use the Azure CLI az keyvault create command to create a Key Vault in the resource group from the previous step. You will need to provide some information:

  • Key vault name: A string of 3 to 24 characters that can contain only numbers (0-9), letters (a-z, A-Z), and hyphens (-)

    Important

    Each key vault must have a unique name. Replace with the name of your key vault in the following examples.

  • Resource group name: myResourceGroup.

  • The location: EastUS.

az keyvault create --name "<your-unique-keyvault-name>" --resource-group "myResourceGroup" --location "EastUS"

The output of this command shows properties of the newly created key vault. Take note of the two properties listed below:

  • Vault Name: The name you provided to the --name parameter above.
  • Vault URI: In the example, this is https://<your-unique-keyvault-name>.vault.azure.net/. Applications that use your vault through its REST API must use this URI.

At this point, your Azure account is the only one authorized to perform any operations on this new vault.

Add a secret to Key Vault

To add a secret to the vault, you just need to take a couple of additional steps. This password could be used by an application. The password will be called ExamplePassword and will store the value of hVFkk965BuUv in it.

Use the Azure CLI az keyvault secret set command below to create a secret in Key Vault called ExamplePassword that will store the value hVFkk965BuUv :

az keyvault secret set --vault-name "<your-unique-keyvault-name>" --name "ExamplePassword" --value "hVFkk965BuUv"

Retrieve a secret from Key Vault

You can now reference this password that you added to Azure Key Vault by using its URI. Use 'https://.vault.azure.net/secrets/ExamplePassword' to get the current version.

To view the value contained in the secret as plain text:

az keyvault secret show --name "ExamplePassword" --vault-name "<your-unique-keyvault-name>" --query "value"

Now, you have created a Key Vault, stored a secret, and retrieved it.

Clean up resources

Other quickstarts and tutorials in this collection build upon this quickstart. If you plan to continue on to work with subsequent quickstarts and tutorials, you may wish to leave these resources in place.

When no longer needed, you can use the Azure CLI az group delete command to remove the resource group and all related resources:

az group delete --name "myResourceGroup"

Next steps

In this quickstart you created a Key Vault and stored a secret in it. To learn more about Key Vault and how to integrate it with your applications, continue on to the articles below.