The auth_type field in the configuration allows to change the authenticator currently used by Parsec. Because keys are not namespaced with the authentication method, the authenticator must not be changed while there are keys stored in Parsec. In a future version, Parsec might support multiple concurrent authenticators, see this issue for details.

Direct Authenticator

The direct authenticator directly parses the authentication field as a UTF-8 string and uses that as application identity.

Warning notice: The Direct Authenticator is only secure under specific requirements. Please make sure to read the Recommendations on a Secure Parsec Deployment. Please only use it for testing or if you are really sure what you are doing.

Unix Peer Credentials Authenticator

The Unix peer credentials authenticator uses Unix peer credentials to authenticate the clients as different Unix users. Here 'Unix peer credentials' refers to metadata about the connection between client and server that contains the effective Unix user identifier (UID) and Unix group identifier (GID) of the connecting process.

To use this authenticator, the application must self-declare its UID (not username) in the authentication field of the request as a zero-padded little-endian 32-bit unsigned integer. This authenticator will then verify that the UID sourced from the peer credentials matches the one self-declared in the request. If they match up, authentication is successful and the application identity is set to the UID.

Note that a Unix domain socket transport is not limited to the Unix peer credentials authenticator; this transport can be used with a different authenticator if required.

The GID and PID components of the Unix peer credentials are currently unused by the peer credentials authenticator.

JWT SPIFFE Verifiable Identity Document Authenticator

The JWT-SVID authenticator uses the JWT-SVID token to authenticate clients. The SPIFFE ID contained and verified in the JWT-SVID is used as application identity for each client.

Please see the JWT SPIFFE Verifiable Identity Document for more information about the structure of the JWT-SVID token.

The token is passed in the authentication field using the JWS Compact Serialization.

The SPIFFE Workload API is used by clients to fetch their JWT-SVID token and by the service to verify it. Its aud claim (audience) must be set to parsec. A low expiration time is recommended through the exp claim.

Copyright 2019 Contributors to the Parsec project.