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Introduction to multitenancy

The goal of multitenancy is to maximize resource sharing by allowing multiple users (tenants) to log in and use a single server/cluster at the same time, in a tenant-isolated manner. That is, each user is given the experience of using his/her own server, rather than a shared environment. Multitenancy ensures optimal performance of the system's resources such as memory and hardware and also secures each tenant's personal data.

You can register tenant domains using the Management Console of WSO2 Identity Server.


When multitenancy is enabled and a tenant becomes inactive for a long period of time, the tenant is unloaded from the server's memory. By default, the time period is 30 minutes. After that, the tenant has to log in again before sending requests to the server.

You can change the default time period allowed for tenant inactiveness by adding -Dtenant.idle.time=<time_in_minutes> java property to the product's startup script ( file for Linux and wso2server.bat for Windows) as shown below:

    -Dtenant.idle.time=30 \


The multi-tenant architecture of WSO2 Identity Server allows you to deploy web applications, web services, mashups, etc. in an environment that supports the following:

  • Tenant isolation: Each tenant has its own domain, which the other tenants cannot access.
  • Data isolation: Each tenant can manage its data securely in an isolated manner.

A tenant is an isolated domain. The users within this domain can manage their own data and perform their own transactions without being affected by actions carried out in other domains.

These domains are allocated a server space from the complete server space of a WSO2 Identity Server instance which is referred to as the super tenant.

The super tenant, as well as each individual tenant, have their own configurations and context modules.

Each tenant has its own security domain. A domain has a set of users, and permissions for those users to access resources. Thus, a tenant is restricted by the users and permissions of the domain assigned to it. The artifact repositories of the tenants are separated from each other.

Tenant diagram

An individual tenant can carry out the following activities within the boundaries of its own configuration and context module:

  • Deploying artifacts
  • Applying security
  • Managing users
  • Managing data
  • Throttling requests
  • Caching responses

Tenant loading policy

Lazy loading is a design pattern used specifically in cloud deployments to prolong the initialization of an object or artifact until it is requested by a tenant or an internal process. You have the option of setting the required tenant loading policy by enabling either Lazy Loading or Eager Loading of tenants. Additionally, you can separately control the loading policy for web applications and axis2 services deployed in your tenants using the GhostDeployment setting.

See Configure the Tenant Loading Policy for more information.


The following restrictions are imposed to ensure that each individual tenant has the required level of isolation and maintains fine-grained security control over its own services without affecting the other tenants.

  • Only the super tenant can modify its own configuration. In addition, it can add, view, and delete tenants.
  • When a tenant logs in to the system, it can only access artifacts deployed under its own configuration. One tenant cannot manipulate the code of another tenant.
  • The super admin or tenant admin can add userstores to their own domain. Dynamic configurations are possible only for secondary userstores and the primary userstore is not configurable at run time. This is because primary userstores are available for all tenants and allowing changes to the configuration at run time can lead to instability of the system. Therefore, the primary userstore is treated as a static property in the implementation and it should be configured prior to run time.
  • A tenant's code cannot invoke sensitive server side functionality. This is achieved via Java security.
  • Tenants share the transports provided by the system. They are not allowed to create their own transports.