Current state: Under Discussion

Discussion thread:

JIRA: KAFKA-15013 - Getting issue details... STATUS

Please keep the discussion on the mailing list rather than commenting on the wiki (wiki discussions get unwieldy fast).


Currently, it's only possible to add policies for Topic creation and configuration updates via CreateTopicPolicy  (introduced in KIP-108) and AlterConfigPolicy (introduced in KIP-133), but not for Topic deletion.

Topic deletion policies would enable operators to control how to proceed when topic deletions are requested.

Implementations of this policy could be used:

  • As additional safeguard when deletion of internal topics is requested, even when a requester is authorized (i.e. has an ACL allowing to deleted).
    • A policy would be useful to avoid the deletion in this case, e.g. deleting Kafka internal topics  __consumer_offsets or application internal topics like Connect internal topics.
    • Authorizer implementations tend to prefer coarse grained permissions to reduce the number of ACLs (e.g. Confluent RBAC which includes Delete as  part of ResourceOwner) which includes both permissions to create and  delete, making it harder to rely only on the Authorizer.
  • To validate against a registry when a topic is deleted, e.g. for cross domain usage.
  • To implement retry-based or flag-based mechanisms to safeguard topic deletion.

There has been related KIPs that included this proposal:

This KIP is intended to reduce the scope of the proposal for topic deletion only, following approach from existing policies.

This KIP borrows parts of KIP-170. If KIP-201 is resurrected, this changes shouldn't increase complexity of the KIP as it follows TopicCreatePolicy approach and same migration should apply.

Public Interfaces

1. New interface on clients module:

package org.apache.kafka.server.policy;

public interface DeleteTopicPolicy extends Configurable, AutoCloseable {

    class RequestMetadata {
        private final String topic;
        private final Uuid id; 

        public RequestMetadata(String topic, Uuid id) {
            this.topic = topic;
   = id;

        public String topic() {
            return topic;

        public Uuid id() {
            return id;

    void validate(RequestMetadata requestMetadata) throws PolicyViolationException;


2. New configuration for brokers: : The delete topic policy class that should be used for validation. The class should implement the org.apache.kafka.server.policy.DeleteTopicPolicy interface.

3. New version of DeleteTopicsRequest protocol message:

DeleteTopics Request (Version: 7) => [topics] timeout validate_only
  topics => STRING
  timeout => INT32
  validate_only => BOOLEAN

Proposed Changes

Apart from the Interfaces proposed, the changes will follow the same approach as TopicCreatePolicy.


  • DeleteTopicsRequest:
    • Bump to version 7
    • Add validateOnly  flag to DeleteTopicsRequest.json 
    • Add POLICY_VIOLATION as possible error code on DeleteTopicsResponse 
    • Add options to DeleteTopicsOptions 
    • Use new flag on KafkaAdminClient 
    • Extend Controller#deleteTopics interface to include DeleteTopicsRequestData and update implementations
  • DeleteTopicPolicy:
    • Add policy config to KafkaConfig 
    • Load policy and pass it to Controllers  and ZKAdminManager .
    • Use policy on ReplicationControlManager 

Compatibility, Deprecation, and Migration Plan

  • What impact (if any) will there be on existing users?

No impact to existing users. All are new APIs, and should not have any compatibility issues apart from validating that validateOnly  flag on protocol is only requested for version 7 of DeleteTopicsRequest message.

Test Plan

Fairly similar to TopicCreatePolicy, checking that config is loaded properly, and policy validation returns proper exception.

Rejected Alternatives

  • Protecting Topics with ACLs:
    • As stated on the motivation, this approach is insufficient, as even when authorization is there topic deletion errors can occur.
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