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This isn't correct, you can use auth_request when authentication agent needs to talk to the user. I can't even see how it could be used without such communication.



Are you referring to a modified version of ngx_http_auth_request by davidjb that permits 3xx responses, including cookie headers?

http://davidjb.com/blog/2013/04/integrating-nginx-and-a-shib...

For some reason, I thought this behaviour made it to the upstream, till I re-read the official ngx_http_auth_request documentation and realized it doesn't pass through 3xx or headers other than WWW-Authenticate:

  The ngx_http_auth_request_module module (1.5.4+) implements 
  client authorization based on the result of a subrequest. 
  If the subrequest returns a 2xx response code, the access
  is allowed. If it returns 401 or 403, the access is
  denied with the corresponding error code. Any other 
  response code returned by the subrequest is considered 
  an error.  For the 401 error, the client also receives
  the “WWW-Authenticate” header from the subrequest response.


No, I was thinking about the original auth_request. For cookies based authentication you need to turn off authorization for login pages (because every visitor should be allowed to access login pages) and pass login requests directly to your auth backend. The auth backend can then verify password, set cookies etc. auth_request failures 401, 403 can also be configured to show login page to the user.

Here is a config that does something like this: https://github.com/wrr/wwwhisper/blob/master/nginx/wwwhisper... (deployed here: https://io-mixedbit.rhcloud.com)

(Sorry for the late reply)




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