Configure a basic-authentication identity provider for users to log in to OpenShift Container Platform with credentials validated against a remote identity provider. Basic authentication is a generic backend integration mechanism.

About identity providers in OpenShift Container Platform

By default, only a kubeadmin user exists on your cluster. To specify an identity provider, you must create a Custom Resource (CR) that describes that identity provider and add it to the cluster.

OpenShift Container Platform user names containing /, :, and % are not supported.

About basic authentication

Basic authentication is a generic backend integration mechanism that allows users to log in to OpenShift Container Platform with credentials validated against a remote identity provider.

Because basic authentication is generic, you can use this identity provider for advanced authentication configurations.

Basic authentication must use an HTTPS connection to the remote server to prevent potential snooping of the user ID and password and man-in-the-middle attacks.

With basic authentication configured, users send their user name and password to OpenShift Container Platform, which then validates those credentials against a remote server by making a server-to-server request, passing the credentials as a basic authentication header. This requires users to send their credentials to OpenShift Container Platform during login.

This only works for user name/password login mechanisms, and OpenShift Container Platform must be able to make network requests to the remote authentication server.

User names and passwords are validated against a remote URL that is protected by basic authentication and returns JSON.

A 401 response indicates failed authentication.

A non-200 status, or the presence of a non-empty "error" key, indicates an error:

{"error":"Error message"}

A 200 status with a sub (subject) key indicates success:

{"sub":"userid"} (1)
1 The subject must be unique to the authenticated user and must not be able to be modified.

A successful response can optionally provide additional data, such as:

  • A display name using the name key. For example:

    {"sub":"userid", "name": "User Name", ...}
  • An email address using the email key. For example:

    {"sub":"userid", "email":"user@example.com", ...}
  • A preferred user name using the preferred_username key. This is useful when the unique, unchangeable subject is a database key or UID, and a more human-readable name exists. This is used as a hint when provisioning the OpenShift Container Platform user for the authenticated identity. For example:

    {"sub":"014fbff9a07c", "preferred_username":"bob", ...}

Creating the Secret

Identity providers use OpenShift Container Platform Secrets in the openshift-config namespace to contain the client secret, client certificates, and keys.

  • You can define an OpenShift Container Platform Secret containing a string by using the following command.

    $ oc create secret generic <secret_name> --from-literal=clientSecret=<secret> -n openshift-config
  • You can define an OpenShift Container Platform Secret containing the contents of a file, such as a certificate file, by using the following command.

    $ oc create secret generic <secret_name> --from-file=/path/to/file -n openshift-config

Creating a ConfigMap

Identity providers use OpenShift Container Platform ConfigMaps in the openshift-config namespace to contain the certificate authority bundle. These are primarily used to contain certificate bundles needed by the identity provider.

  • Define an OpenShift Container Platform ConfigMap containing the certificate authority by using the following command. The certificate authority must be stored in the ca.crt key of the ConfigMap.

    $ oc create configmap ca-config-map --from-file=ca.crt=/path/to/ca -n openshift-config

Sample basic authentication CR

The following Custom Resource (CR) shows the parameters and acceptable values for an basic authentication identity provider.

Basic authentication CR
apiVersion: config.openshift.io/v1
kind: OAuth
metadata:
  name: cluster
spec:
  identityProviders:
  - name: basicidp (1)
    mappingMethod: claim (2)
    type: BasicAuth
    basicAuth:
      url: https://www.example.com/remote-idp (3)
      ca: (4)
        name: ca-config-map
      tlsClientCert: (5)
        name: client-cert-secret
      tlsClientKey: (6)
        name: client-key-secret
1 This provider name is prefixed to the returned user ID to form an identity name.
2 Controls how mappings are established between this provider’s identities and user objects.
3 URL accepting credentials in Basic authentication headers.
4 Optional: Reference to an OpenShift Container Platform ConfigMap containing the PEM-encoded certificate authority bundle to use in validating server certificates for the configured URL.
5 Optional: Reference to an OpenShift Container Platform Secret containing the client certificate to present when making requests to the configured URL.
6 Reference to an OpenShift Container Platform Secret containing the key for the client certificate. Required if tlsClientCert is specified.

Adding an identity provider to your clusters

After you install your cluster, add an identity provider to it so your users can authenticate.

Prerequisites
  • Create an OpenShift Container Platform cluster.

  • Create the Custom Resource (CR) for your identity providers.

  • You must be logged in as an administrator.

Procedure
  1. Apply the defined CR:

    $ oc apply -f </path/to/CR>

    If a CR does not exist, oc apply creates a new CR and might trigger the following warning: Warning: oc apply should be used on resources created by either oc create --save-config or oc apply. In this case you can safely ignore this warning.

  2. Log in to the cluster as a user from your identity provider, entering the password when prompted.

    $ oc login -u <username>
  3. Confirm that the user logged in successfully, and display the user name.

    $ oc whoami

Basic authentication troubleshooting

The most common issue relates to network connectivity to the backend server. For simple debugging, run curl commands on the master. To test for a successful login, replace the <user> and <password> in the following example command with valid credentials. To test an invalid login, replace them with false credentials.

curl --cacert /path/to/ca.crt --cert /path/to/client.crt --key /path/to/client.key -u <user>:<password> -v https://www.example.com/remote-idp

Successful responses

A 200 status with a sub (subject) key indicates success:

{"sub":"userid"}

The subject must be unique to the authenticated user, and must not be able to be modified.

A successful response can optionally provide additional data, such as:

  • A display name using the name key:

    {"sub":"userid", "name": "User Name", ...}
  • An email address using the email key:

    {"sub":"userid", "email":"user@example.com", ...}
  • A preferred user name using the preferred_username key:

    {"sub":"014fbff9a07c", "preferred_username":"bob", ...}

    The preferred_username key is useful when the unique, unchangeable subject is a database key or UID, and a more human-readable name exists. This is used as a hint when provisioning the OpenShift Container Platform user for the authenticated identity.

Failed responses

  • A 401 response indicates failed authentication.

  • A non-200 status or the presence of a non-empty "error" key indicates an error: {"error":"Error message"}