Deploy A Test SAML Identity Provider
If you are developing a web service, and you want to make it capable of integrating with a SAML SSO, then you are going to need to deploy a SAML identity provider to test against. Deploying a production-ready identity provider service is time consuming. Luckily, we don't need to do this.
This tutorial will help you deploy an example identity provider with the help of SimpleSAML and Docker.
Deploy a VM with docker-compose installed.
Create Apache Configuration
Unfortunately, we need to create an Apache configuration, so that we can tell the service about our custom SSL certificates.
<VirtualHost *:8080> DocumentRoot /var/www/simplesamlphp Alias /simplesaml /var/www/simplesamlphp/www <Directory /var/www/simplesamlphp/www> <IfModule !mod_authz_core.c> Require all granted </IfModule> </Directory> </VirtualHost> <VirtualHost *:8443> DocumentRoot /var/www/simplesamlphp SSLEngine on SSLCertificateFile /etc/apache2/ssl/site.crt SSLCertificateKeyFile /etc/apache2/ssl/private.pem SSLCertificateChainFile /etc/apache2/ssl/ca.crt Alias /simplesaml /var/www/simplesamlphp/www <Directory /var/www/simplesamlphp/www> <IfModule !mod_authz_core.c> Require all granted </IfModule> </Directory> </VirtualHost>
Now create your SSL certificates in whatever manner works for you. I like to generate genuine certificates through Let's Encrypt with the help of AcmePHP, but you may wish to create your own self signed certificates.
Create a folder called
ssl and put the the certificates in there with the following names:
- site.crt - your site's public certificate.
- ca.crt - the public certificate of your certificate authority (e.g. Let's Encrypt).
- private.pem - your site's private certificate file.
SSLCertificateChainFile line in the
Create Docker Compose File
Now we can put it all together. Create a
docker-compose.yml file with the following (swapping out
idp.mydomain.com with the FQDN you assing to the server).
version: "3.9" services: saml: image: kristophjunge/test-saml-idp ports: - 8080:8080 - 8443:8443 container_name: idp-server volumes: - type: bind target: /etc/apache2/sites-enabled/simplesamlphp.conf source: ./apache.conf read_only: true - type: bind target: /etc/apache2/ssl source: ./ssl read_only: true environment: - SIMPLESAMLPHP_SP_ENTITY_ID=https://service-provider.mydomain.com - SIMPLESAMLPHP_SP_ASSERTION_CONSUMER_SERVICE=https://service-provider.mydomain.com/auth/saml-login-handler - SIMPLESAMLPHP_SP_SINGLE_LOGOUT_SERVICE=https://service-provider.mydomain.com/auth/saml-logout-handler
8080 are hardcoded in the codebase with redirects etc, so switching to ports 80 and 443 are too problematic.
SIMPLESAMLPHP_SP_SINGLE_LOGOUT_SERVICE define the endpoints of your website that is acting as a service provider.
These endpoints should be handling the responses from the IDP for authentication and logging out respectively.
docker-compose up to spin up the service.
If you go to https://idp.mydomain.com:8443/simplesaml in your browser (swapping out idp.mydomain.com for your server's domain), then you should see the following screen showing you that the service is up.
You can now start developing your service to act as a service provider against this identity provider. When doing so, be aware that there are two static users configured with the following data:
| UID | Username | Password | Group | Email | | ----| -------- | ----------| ------ | ----------------- | | 1 | user1 | user1pass | group1 | firstname.lastname@example.org | | 2 | user2 | user2pass | group2 | email@example.com |
If you need to login as the admin user, the password is:
Optional - Set Own Signing Certificates
The default deployment will use a public/private certificate pair that came with the image in order to perform the signing of the SAML requests. If you need to set these to your own, then first we need to generate our own certificate pair:
openssl req \ -newkey rsa:2048 \ -nodes -keyout server.pem \ -x509 \ -days 365 \ -out server.crt
Put these within a folder called
Next, we need to mount them into the docker container through the use of a volume like so:
version: "3.9" services: saml: image: kristophjunge/test-saml-idp ports: - 8080:8080 - 8443:8443 container_name: idp-server volumes: - type: bind target: /etc/apache2/sites-enabled/simplesamlphp.conf source: ./apache.conf read_only: true - type: bind target: /etc/apache2/ssl source: ./ssl read_only: true - type: bind target: /var/www/simplesamlphp/cert source: ./signing-certs read_only: true environment: - SIMPLESAMLPHP_SP_ENTITY_ID=https://app.programster.org - SIMPLESAMLPHP_SP_ASSERTION_CONSUMER_SERVICE=https://app.programster.org/auth/saml-login-handler - SIMPLESAMLPHP_SP_SINGLE_LOGOUT_SERVICE=https://app.programster.org/auth/saml-logout-handler
Now re-deploy the container for the changes to take effect.
Finally, check that the certificates appear correctly on the page https://idp.mydomain.com:8443/simplesaml/saml2/idp/metadata.php?output=xhtml and that there isn't some kind of permission/access error that may need resolving. Don't forget that the filenames will need to be server.pem and server.crt.
You now have an test identity provider set up. You may wish to look at my example code on GitHub which demonstrates setting up a service provider in PHP-based site with the help of the programster/saml package.
First published: 14th August 2021