My client application is authenticating with a SharePoint website using the Authentication web service in Windows Sharepoint Services 3.0. The client is not written in C# and I craft the SOAP request "manually".

The authentication fails with the PasswordNotMatch LoginErrorCode when the provided password contains special characters. For instance, this password xS-5[V!VQEo!-4 generated by SharePoint fails the authentication.

What kind of encoding/escaping/processing do I need to do on the password when I build the SOAP request for authentication? Here's an example request with the password mentioned above:

<?xml version=\"1.0\" encoding=\"utf-8\"?>
<soap:Envelope xmlns:xsi=\"http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance\" xmlns:xsd=\"http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema\" xmlns:soap=\"http://schemas.xmlsoap.org/soap/envelope/\">
<Login xmlns=\"http://schemas.microsoft.com/sharepoint/soap/\">


  • OK, actually, the password I've given doesn't fail authentication. But I guess XML reserved characters would not be accepted, would they?
    – ptrico
    Commented Feb 2, 2012 at 9:13
  • It seems very likely that you would need to encode XML reserved characters: <>"&
    – Kit Menke
    Commented Feb 2, 2012 at 15:43
  • Hi Kit, yes probably but into what? Their corresponding entity?
    – ptrico
    Commented Feb 3, 2012 at 4:35

1 Answer 1


Looks like you figured it out already but I'm guessing it is the XML reserved characters:

< becomes &lt;
> becomes &gt;
& becomes &amp;
" becomes &quot;
' becomes &apos;

Really though, whatever language you're crafting the SOAP message in probably already has a HTML/XML encode function.

More information and a list of all the entities.

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