SAML Provisioning

Glance's single sign-on provisioning screen is shown here. The best way to obtain values for most fields in this screen is to upload a Metadata Discovery Endpoint XML file. Most identity provider operators can provide it.

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SAML Provisioning Fields

Group Number and Name: Identification of the customer group.

Single Sign-On Method: You may choose Off, SAML 2.0, or Encrypted SAML 2.0. Most SAML customers use SAML 2.0 (without encryption).

Description: A text field describing the SAML setup.

Unique Account Identifier: For some identity providers, this must have a specific value. For example, for accounts, it should contain the Organization ID. For Azure Active Directory accounts, it should contain the Tenant Unique Name. If you set it, you can use its value in the idptoken parameter in Service Target URLs (described later in this document). If it is not required by your identity provider, you may leave it blank.

Operational Status: When you first provision a new account, set this to Provisioning. This setting causes SAML authentication attempts to put entries in the Access Log. When the provisioning is stable, change this to Production.

Redirect for IdP-initiated sessions: Some identity providers allow users to initiate single sign-on directly from the identity provider's user interface. This value allows you to redirect those users to an appropriate page on the Glance service. For example, /cobrowse/AgentJoin.aspx presents the Cobrowse join page to users coming in via the identity provider. This field must contain a relative URL to a page within the Glance backend. It may not contain an absolute URL: any URL starting with https://.

Entity ID: This is the federation entity ID (also sometimes known as the relying party trust identifier) for the Glance service provider. In most cases it should be set to Some cloud identity providers will provide the correct value. For example, for Azure Active Directory, it usually is set to the Azure Tenant GUID.

User Identity Attribute Name: Assertions, the tokens sent to Glance from identity providers, contain one or more attributes describing the authenticated user. Put the name of the attribute uniquely identifying the user. The attribute value must uniquely match the Glance user's Glance Address, Partner User ID, or Email Address.

Metadata Discovery Endpoint: A metadata discovery endpoint is an XML document furnished by the identity provider. You upload it to Glance here. Metadata Discovery Endpoints are very helpful because they set most of the required fields on this provisioning page.

Identity Provider Endpoint URL: This is the URL, furnished by the identity provider, to which Glance presents authentication requests. A Metadata Discovery Endpoint document contains it.

Identity Provider Endpoint Type: Glance presents authentication requests to your identity provider using either https redirect, or an https POST operation. Your identity provider furnishes this value. A Metadata Discovery Endpoint document contains it.

Authentication Context: Most identity providers require elements called authentication contexts when Glance sends single sign-on requests. Others do not allow them. Your identity provider gives you this setting.

Name ID Policy: Most identity providers require an element called a NameID Policy when Glance sends a single sign-on request. In most cases, the NameID Policy should specify an Email, but some identity providers require the policy to be Unspecified. Your identity provider gives you this setting.

ACS Parameter Style: Your identity provider responds to single sign-on requests using a Glance URL called an Assertion Consumer Service (ACS). In most cases, parameters describing what to do after single sign-on can be appended to the ACS. In some cases your identity provider passes those parameters in a separate Relay State element. Your identity provider gives you this setting.

X.509 Public Key: Your identity provider furnishes one or more public keys for Glance to use when validating Assertions, the tokens sent to Glance from identity providers. The identity provider cryptographically signs Assertions with a private key matching one of these public key. Cryptographic signing prevents Assertions from being forged. A Metadata Discovery Endpoint contains the public key or keys. See Changing Public Keys below for more information about these fields.

Encryption Certificate: When you choose Encrypted SAML 2.0 in the Single Sign-on Method, this field appears. When you use Encrypted SAML 2.0 your identity provider responds to single sign-on requests by sending encrypted Assertions (XML tokens) to Glance. This is the key certificate by which Glance decrypts those documents. The key certificate is secret. A Glance staff member generates it and never sends it to the identity provider.

A Glance staff member will upload the key certificate file and then press the Update button. The provisioning page will show the corresponding public key. Provide the public key to the person who operates your identity provider.

Notice that Encrypted SAML is only used to conceal the contents of Assertions. Assertions are already transmitted via https Transport Layer Security. Encrypted SAML provides an extra measure of security beyond https. Most SAML users do not use encryption, but rather rely on https alone.

Changing Public Keys

Glance supports multiple public keys. Each one is used in turn to attempt to validate each SAML Assertion.

From time to time, identity provider operators may replace (rotate) the cryptographic key they use to sign SAML assertions. When this happens it is necessary for the identity provider operator to furnish the new public key to Glance. These steps allow for seamless key-pair changes, without the need to synchronize changes to your identity provider and Glance's provisioning screen.

  1. The identity provider operator generates a new public / private key pair.

  2. Glance puts the new public key into the provisioning screen as an "additional public key."

  3. The identity provider operator starts using the new key pair.

Vendor-Specific Provisioning Information

Certain vendors of identity provider servers require specific provisioning; this screen makes it possible.

Microsoft Active Directory Federation Services (AD/FS)


Microsoft Azure AD

In Azure, the Unique Account Identifier should be set to the Azure Tenant Unique Name. The Entity ID should be set to the Azure Tenant's GUID, using a value that looks something like this, with dashes, but without curly braces or other punctuation. deadbeef-cafe-1234-5678-dcba9876543210

User Identity Attribute Name should be NameID.

Authentication Context should be set to "Include."

Name ID Policy should be "Email."

Computer Associates Single Sign-On

Some versions of CA's identity provider do not offer metadata discovery endpoint files. You must provide values for the Identity Provider Endpoint URL, the Identity Provider Endpoint Type, and the X.509 Signing Certificate.

It may be necessary to choose "Redirect" for the Identity Provider Endpoint Type.

Ping Identity

For Ping Identity, the Name ID Policy ordinarily must be "Email."

Some Ping Identity providers require a slightly different Assertion Consumer Service:

Metadata discovery endpoint files from contain the necessary information to configure Glance to use as an identity provider.

Metadata discovery endpoint files from contain the necessary information to configure Glance to use as an identity provider.

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