English-posts · Programmering · Teknologi

Howto bypass Weblogic security model

28. oktober 2008 · 2 Kommentar

Oracle Weblogic (former BEA Weblogic) enforces a security model by default that is unhealthy for developers writing REST web services or other kinds of web applications using HTTP Authentication for security.

By default, when sending an HTTP Authentication header, Weblogic will check its own security realms for users matching the username and password. If there is no match, a 401 UNAUTHORIZED response is sent directly back to the client, without ever hitting your web application code. That takes care of the security, i guess…

This might sound like a good idea, except for those cases when your application is able to handle its own authentication. How can your application handle security when the request never hits your code?

Another problem, as i see it, is that Weblogic enforces this security model even for web application that are configured with no security at all. You can use your web application as much as you like, as long as you don’t send any HTTP Authentication headers. But when you decide to send an HTTP Authentication header like that, just for fun or when navigating from another website after being authenticated, Weblogic decides on your applications behalf that you are no longer worthy enough to use your application. That sucks…

The solution
The solution? Yes, you can bypass the security model of Weblogic, at least for those applications that does not rely on the web containers security. It took me many weeks of frustration before I found a solution to my problem, but I got there…

Shutdown your admin server and open the config/config.xml file for editing. Add the following XML code into the <security -configuration> node:


Start the admin server again. Then you need to restart all the application servers to make the change take effect. Restart them one by one to avoid downtime… you are of course running a cluster right? ;)