I need to integrate one External SSO aunthentication provider with SharePoint 2010. For what I see I need to integrate it with FBA (Please correct me if I'm wrong).

Functional Description:

1 -User go to the external SSO login page (provided by the external authentication provider); 2 - User login, and is redirected to one page where he have a list with the applications he have permission to access; 3 - User selects the SharePoint 2010 Web Application link, and is redirected to the SharePoint 2010 Web Application (The external SSO creates one cookie in user machine with some user information);

Expected behavior:

User is automatically authenticated to the sharepoint 2010.

My issue is to implement this design, I don't know how I tell to sharepoint to get the cookie user information (No problem to code some method to get user info from the cookie), and I also don't know how to make the authentication without pass by the .

Any Idea?


  • What is the External SSO provider authenticating to? This will be what SharePoint also needs to authenticate against.
    – Trevor Seward
    Mar 7 '12 at 15:09
  • The external SSO provider, have the user permissions for the several applications used in the organization. Ex: User 1 can access to 3 existing applications in the organization, so he logins to the SSO provider and see the 3 links to the web apps, basically the external sso manages the user permissions for the internal web applications. (please let me know if this is not clear).Thanks
    – marinho
    Mar 7 '12 at 15:16
  • It isn't clear. Understood that the SSO provider has access to the applications, but what is the SSO provider authenticating users against (Active Directory, SQL database, other)? You'll want to set SharePoint up to authenticate against that same provider.
    – Trevor Seward
    Mar 7 '12 at 15:56
  • The SSO have is own database (I don't know if is Sybase, mysql, etc), they have one web service to connect with it, and I can get the user information from web service. The issue is when I click in the link in the web application SSO page, I don't know how to validate in SharePoint. Usualy we can develop one custom membership provider... but how to call the membership provider methods without passing for the <forms loginUrl="/_login/default.aspx" /> page?
    – marinho
    Mar 7 '12 at 16:14

The SSO vendor should provide the details of that in their documentation and, more than likely, they have some code that needs to be installed on SharePoint Farm for it to work properly. Each SSO vendor is different in this regard as how they interact with the SharePoint stack differs. Beyond that, there are often dozens of configuration options in the SSO product itself that can prevent it from working properly.

I spent two solid weeks working with one vendor (RSA) to get their SSO product to work with SharePoint 2010 and it required a lot of effort from their side. Granted, this was one of the very first real integrations of their SSO with 2010, but it still took very close coordination.

It is also worth noting that some SSO solutions that worked with SharePoint 2007 will not work properly in 2010 because of the change in the way the SharePoint stack is processed. Also, some SSO solutions will only work in SharePoint 2010

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