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We're building an web app (asp.net) that should be accessible to partners only. The partners already have access to an extranet SharePoint site.

Here's the question:

Our app need to authenticate users (partners only). Would it be a good fit to make our web app an provided hosted app? Would we then get authentication for free?

We currently don't need to get any information from SharePoint, just authenticate the same set of users. The only info on the partner site in SharePoint would be a link to our app.

Would you say it's an overkill to go with a provider hosted app for this scenario?

  • Wow... is that the case? I totally missed that. – Larsi Aug 13 '13 at 14:07
  • Are you sure? I did not think it should care about the backend at all? – Larsi Aug 13 '13 at 14:09
  • :-) but would it be a good fit? – Larsi Aug 13 '13 at 14:11
  • As someone else has marked the question, I guess this is opinion-based. You would not get much for free, but it would be very well integrated with an existing SharePoint solution. – Robert Lindgren Aug 13 '13 at 14:13
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For provider hosted app, you are responsible for provisioning web application (bring your own infrastructure for web application) but it will support multi-tenant scenario where you install the back end once and you deploy app piece to many partners and they all share one back end. Hence you can easily update the web application without having to update app.

Since provider hosted app is kind of cloud hosted app, you get a lot of benefits like

  1. Authentication with external partners will be done using OAuth and Microsoft has done a lot to overcome the complexities using helper classes like TokenHelper etc.

  2. You will be able to use Remote Event Receivers (app installed, app upgraded etc.)

  3. You don’t want to develop entire app in JavaScript OR, you want to leverage .Net/PHP/whatever skills

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