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  • Oracle Identity Federation (OIF) for beginners : IdP / SP

    Posted by "" in "oif" on 2012-04-01

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    This post covers basics of Federation and few points on OIF

    1. Identity Federation is process of exchanging identity information between two enterprise (domains) Identity Provider (IdP) and Service Provider (SP). Assume that there are two companies

    a) Your Company with name myCorp – domain1
    b) Travel company (travelCorp) which provide car/flight booking for employees of company myCorp – domain2

    Exchange of identity information between domain1 (myCorp) and domain2 (travelCorp) is called as Federation.

    2. Typically in Federation there are two parties
    a) IdP (Identity Provider) – provides Identity
    b) SP (Service Provider) – receives identity and provides service

    In above example – If you are employee of myCorp and you takes travel service (flight or car) from travelCorp then in this case myCorp will be treated as Identity Provider (IdP) and travelCorp will act as Service Provider (SP)

    3. Oracle’s Federation Solution is Oracle Identity Federation (OIF) and is one of the component of Oracle Identity Management Suite.

    4. OIF can act as IdP only, SP only, or both SP & IdP

    5. Federation can be
    a) Browser-based – user accessing web application from browser on HTTP : Oracle Identity Federation (OIF) provides browser-based Federation Solution .

    b) Document-based – application to application communication on SOAP : Oracle Web Services Manager (OWSM) provides document-based Federation solution.

    6. Federation can be configured in following ways or use cases
    a) Transient Federation : user may or may not have account in both federation partners i.e. IdP and SP. SP simply relies on session asserted by IdP.

    b) Mapped Federation (Account Mapping) : user has account on both federation partners i.e. in IdP and SP. Account in IdP is mapped to account in SP based on common attribute. There is 1-to-1 linking of account between IdP and SP based on shared information like email, DN, uid etc.

    c) Linked Federation
     (Account Linking): is an extension to mapped federation where user has account in both federation partners but there is no common attribute for mapping. This is also 1-to-1 linking of account between IdP and SP (similar to Mapped Federation) . Example of linked federation is where user attribute employeeNumber(or something else) at IdP side is linked to different attribute (like uid or email) at SP.

    d) Role based federation (attribute based)
    : IdP can send non-unique attribute in place of specific attribute like role of identity i.e. manager or developer.

    7. OIF 11g is J2EE application deployed on WebLogic Server. OIF is deployed under managed server in WebLogic Domain and is tightly integrated with Fusion Middleware Enterprise Manager Control (em)

    8. OIF 11g is installed using Oracle Identity Management software (same software that contains OID & OVD).

    9. Latest available OIF version (as of April 2012) is (11g R1 PS5) . 11g R1 PS5 ( is patch set only that means it must be installed on base version

    10. Default Identity Store for OIF is WebLogic’s embedded LDAP server which can be changed to external LDAP server (OID, AD, ODSEE…) either at initial configuration statgeor later using enterprise manager (em)

    In next post, I’ll cover installation of Oracle Identity Federation including Authentication Type, User Store, Federation Store, Session/Message Store, and Configuration Store in OIF


    9 Responses to “Oracle Identity Federation (OIF) for beginners : IdP / SP”

    1. […] OAM integration with OIF : Authentication Engine or Service Provider Posted in April 3rd, 2012 byAtul Kumar in oam, oif  Print This Post OIF is a federation product from Oracle which can act as both Identity Provider (IdP) or Service Provider (SP). More on Federation basics IdP/SP here […]

    2. […] OAM – OIF integration : Login Fails when value for attribute cn is different than uid in LDAP Store Posted in April 11th, 2012 byAtul Kumar in oam, oif  Print This Post I recently integrated OAM with OIF where OAM is configured as OIF SP Integration Module. In this integration OAM resource is protected by authentication scheme OIFScheme and OAM’s authentication is delegated to OIF. More on Federation basics here […]

    3. […] This type of federation is called as Linked Federation, other types are Transient, Mapped, and Attribute or Role-based Federation  . Step by step integration of Linked-based federation in OIF is covered in Oracle By Example […]

    4. […] with Oracle Access Manager (OAM) as SP Integration Module. For basics of OIF SP/IdP click here. OIF SP with IdP is integrated using linked federation (attribute employeeNumber on IdP is linked […]

    5. Viruls says:

      Hi Atul,

      I am new to OIF , After configuring OIF as idp and while accessing IDP url I am getting error in webbrowser and federation-error.log
      respectively as follows:

      500 Internal Server Error

      12/07/25 10:53:59: ERROR – oracle.security.fed.security.signature.exceptions.SignatureGenerationException: privateKey signing parameter cannot be null
      12/07/25 10:53:59: ERROR – oracle.security.fed.controller.web.action.exceptions.ResponseHandlerException: oracle.security.fed.http.translator.MsgTranslationException: oracle.security.fed.security.signature.exceptions.SignatureGenerationException: privateKey signing parameter cannot be null

      Please provide me a solution .


    6. Seta says:

      Hi, i find this article very layman and useful. Thanks for sharing as i do not have IT background.

    7. Shiva says:

      Hi, I have a requirement to configure OIF as SP and Windows live as IDP. I am not able to find any help in the documentation, if anyone has done this please post the high level steps.


    8. MohaKumar says:

      Hi Atul,

      I am using OIF 10g and my data store is OAM 10g(integrated OAM & OIF) i am having multiple directory profiles in OAM, let say SSOroot.local is main node and its childs are SSOchilda.ssoroot.local,SSOchildb.ssoroot.local

      When i configured a saml application and try to access the application, i am able to login with all the users in root node, and where as the users in the child node are unable to login and getting the below error, and here when i search the users i am able to search all the users such as i am getting users in root node as well as in child nodes.


      ERROR – javax.naming.NameNotFoundException: [LDAP: error code 32 – 0000208D: NameErr: DSID-031001CD, problem 2001 (NO_OBJECT), data 0, best match of:
      ] [Root exception is com.sun.jndi.ldap.LdapReferralException: [LDAP: error code 10 – 0000202B: RefErr: DSID-0310063C, data 0, 1 access points
      ref 1: ‘ssoroot.local’
      ]; remaining name ‘CN=mohan kumar,CN=Users,DC=ssochilda,DC=ssoroot,DC=local,dc=ssoroot,dc=local’]; remaining name ”
      13/02/20 23:03:48: ERROR – No value in user record for Name ID Policy requested: urn:oasis:names:tc:SAML:1.1:nameid-format:emailAddress

      Please help me regarding this error.


    9. Prat says:

      Nice article.

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