"Through my own work I have seen the growth in demand for a
variety of portal applications. Portals are becoming more and more
sophisticated, with complex technical and functional requirements.
Even though the tools are available to build simple portals, the
issues of integrating them with remote or legacy data sources are
not trivial. One such issue is authentication.
"Authentication is a complex problem. Portals need to
authenticate users to back-end data sources and applications, yet
these applications may each have different underlying security
infrastructures. And the ideal and most efficient authentication
solution is a single sign-on one, or SSO, in which the user only
has to log in once and is authenticated to all of the network
"Recently, when I was asked to build an educational portal that
required SSO, I researched a number of commercial and open source
SSO solutions. In this article, I'll walk through a step-by-step
process for implementing a simple SSO system using a freely
available implementation called CAS from Yale University..."