Monday, 31 August 2015

Service accounts support in Keycloak

From 1.4 we added support for Service accounts to Keycloak. This feature allows to authenticate the client application with Keycloak server and retrieve the access token dedicated to this application. No interaction with users needed. This is great for administrative tasks executed on behalf of a service instead of individual user. You also don't even need browser available, the communication with Keycloak server is done in background.

To support service accounts, you just need to enable switch "Service accounts enabled" for particular client in admin console and then map roles will, which will be available in access token granted to the client. How to send client authentication request and retrieve service account is described in documentation . There is also service account example, which is part of the main demo example application from keycloak example distribution.

Right now, we support authenticating clients just through Client Credentials Grant from OAuth 2.0 spec, but in the future we plan to add more ways how to authenticate clients. This will include public/private key pair (similarly like Google is doing), 2-way SSL with client certificates and maybe more. We also plan to add suport for offline tokens, which might be quite useful for the service accounts, as I suppose one of the main usecases for them is triggering various offline administrative tasks periodically etc.

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