Open Source Web Application SSO

Written by Ryan Squires on April 10, 2019

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Is there an open source web application SSO (single sign-on) solution worth considering? Given the fact that some SSO platforms can cost upwards of $25 per user/per month, it makes sense that IT admins are looking to open source solutions. In short, IT admins would love to find cost-effective, open source alternatives.

Open Source Options and Challenges

Unfortunately, the truth is that there really aren’t any open source single sign-on solutions that have gained a great deal of traction. So, while specific open source solutions haven’t really cropped up, there are definitely some open source implementations that have bits and pieces of web application SSO capabilities that can be helpful such as FreeIPA, Samba, and others. Generally, these open source SSO platforms utilize protocols such as SAML, OAuth, OpenID, and/or similar.

The challenge has been that even with an open source implementation, the nature of web app SSO is that there needs to be some work done for each web application. Even if there is minimal development, Testing of the integration is required, Even if there is minimal development, What that ultimately translates to is a significant amount of work and effort that can prove detrimental in your efforts to build a viable open source web app SSO implementation. In fact, there has been a bit more success with open source single protocol identity providers such as OpenLDAP, but that market, too, is rapidly changing.

As a matter of fact, the entire identity and access management (IAM) space has been in flux over the last few years. While there has been a great deal of interest in web application single sign-on, the underlying identity provider has been shifting from the on-prem Microsoft Active Directory platform to cloud-based directory services. Even more, this modern approach to a cloud identity management solution is broad enough to cover not only centralized user management, but True Single Sign-On, cloud LDAP, hosted RADIUS, system management, two-factor authentication (2FA), and much more.

If Not Open Source Web Application SSO, Then What?

For IT admins the concept may not be to leverage an open source web app SSO solution, but rather, find a comprehensive cloud directory with True Single Sign-On capabilities built in. True Single Sign-On is different from web application SSO because it allows you to log in to virtually all of your resources with a single set of credentials. Unlike standard web application SSO solutions that only enable you to access web apps, True SSO works by enabling your users to log in to all of their resources including systems, on-prem and web applications, file servers in the cloud and on-prem, all with one username and password delivered by JumpCloud Directory-as-a-Service.

Learn More About JumpCloud

JumpCloud Directory-as-a-Service is a welcome alternative to open source web application SSO. Sign up and give it a try today at no charge. Plus, with the free version of our account, you’re empowered to manage 10 users free, forever. If you’re ready to learn more about Directory-as-a-Service, feel free to contact us and speak with one of our experts. Alternatively, you can check out our Knowledge Base and YouTube channel for more information.

Ryan Squires

Ryan Squires is a content writer at JumpCloud, a company dedicated to connecting users to the IT resources they need securely and efficiently. He has a degree in Journalism and Media Communication from Colorado State University.

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