SAML Integration


This tutorial will assist with standing up a simple application protected by Shibboleth and add the application to the AAF’s TEST Federation to evaluate basic functionality.

What you’ll learn

  • How to install Shibboleth (on desktop or using Dockerfile)
  • How to configure Shibboleth
  • How to configure Apache
  • How to integrate Shibboleth SP with an application

What you’ll need

The prerequisites for this tutorial require elevated privileges to one of the supported platforms and the installation and/or configuration of the following components:

  • a supported web server,
  • SSL libraries suitable for the web server,
  • open firewall port HTTPS/443 that permits inbound and outbound traffic,
  • NTP service and active time synchronisation - SAML transactions are time-sensitive,
  • allocation of a DNS name for the service,
  • where available, SELinux is disabled, as it may interfere with communication between the Apache web server and the Shibboleth process.

Optional requirements include:

  • Docker container platform
  • Knowledge running a container platform in a local development environment

This guide is derived from the Shibboleth Wiki and assumes knowledge of the following aspects of the target OS and architecture:

  • working knowledge of the web server platform,
  • standard OS-level knowledge, sufficient for software installation, configuration file editing and starting/stopping of processes/services,
  • working knowledge of XML,
  • basic knowledge of public key cryptography,
  • basic understanding of web cookies and redirects,
  • basic understanding of web authentication.

The Shibboleth Wiki provides installation and configuration information for Shibboleth Service Provider (SP) on the following platforms:

  • RedHat/CentOS versions 6, 7 or 8 with Apache 2.2, 2.4 or FastCGI; and
  • Windows 2008 and later with Apache 2.2, 2.4 or IIS;
  • additional information on building packages from source for other RPM-supporting Linux versions.

The Shibboleth Consortium has considerably streamlined the SP installation process for Linux and Apache, and this guide reflects that approach. Other combinations of platform and web server require additional steps to install the SP, configure the web server and protect content. For these, links in this guide will refer deployers to additional Shibboleth documentation.

All links in this tutorial are collated on the Links Page.