IDM and HTTP Basic Authentication

HTTP basic authentication is a simple challenge and response mechanism whereby the client submits a user ID and password to the server. IDM understands the authorization header of the HTTP basic authentication contract. However, it deliberately does not use the full HTTP basic authentication contract and does not cause the browser built-in mechanism to prompt for username and password. It does understand utilities such as curl that can send the username and password in the Authorization header.

In general, the HTTP basic authentication mechanism does not work well with client side web applications, and applications that need to render their own login screens. Because the browser stores and sends the username and password with each request, HTTP basic authentication has significant security vulnerabilities. You can therefore send the username and password via the authorization header, and IDM returns a token for subsequent access.

Access to the IDM REST interface requires that the client authenticate. User self-registration requires anonymous access. For this purpose, IDM includes an anonymous user, with the password anonymous. For more information, see Internal users.

The examples in this documentation use the IDM authentication headers in all REST examples, for example:

curl \
--header "X-OpenIDM-Username: openidm-admin" \
--header "X-OpenIDM-Password: openidm-admin" \
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