Shibboleth on Apache 2.4 Using Mixed Authentication Methods

by Jonathan Lent

Like many developers, application maintainers, and system administrators at Stanford, I’ve been focussing a lot of time lately on migrating legacy web applications to using Shibboleth (from WebAuth). Also like many, I’ve found Alex Tayts’ article Migrating away from WebAuth: practical steps very useful during this process. However, as straight-forward as that writeup is, it doesn’t account for one thing: the Shibboleth SP software is not perfect.

During a recent deployment, I found that by simply enabling the shib2 Apache module on systems with Apache 2.4 running, applications using multiple AuthTypes (e.g. WebAuth and basic authentication) were suddenly presenting a 401 (Unauthorized) error message. This was before adding any directives to use Shibboleth as the AuthType.

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