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SSL bridging is the process of decrypting the encrypted SSL traffic that arrives from the browser and then re-encrypting it before sending it on to the server. SSL bridging can be used to ensure that the contents of the SSL-encrypted transmission are reliable and secure .

It enables NGINX to decrypt client requests from the browser. X509 authenticarion will not work in the normal SSL Termination since NGINX does not pass the X509 Certificate as a request attribute to the server after decrypting it. Due to this, the server will not be able to authenticate the client using its certificate, resulting in the failure of X509 authentication.

We need a separate valve to handle the request from NGINX and pass the X509 Certificate as a request attribute to the server. Here, we configure NGINX to pass the SSL Certificate as a request header.

Following are the steps to configure X509Authenticator with SSL Termination using NGINX and WSO2 Identity Server.

  1. Configure NGINX for SSL Termination
  2. Configure the proxy ports in IS
  3. Change the authentication SAML endpoint in the travelocity sample
  4. Configure X509 Authenticator to WSO2 Identity Server
  5. Add X509 Authetication Valve to WSO2 Identity Server

Configure NGINX for SSL Termination

  1. Install the NGINX 1.15.8 community version.
  2. Create an SSL directory in /usr/local/etc/nginx.
  3. Create a self-signed key and certificate for NGINX as shown below and put them into /usr/local/etc/nginx/ssl.

    openssl req -newkey rsa:2048 -new -nodes -keyout key.pem -x509 -days 365 
    -out nginx.pem
    openssl x509 -text -noout -in nginx.pem
  4. Add the following configurations to the nginx.config file in /usr/local/etc/nginx.

    Mention the path of the file in which you have created the self-signed key and the certificate as ssl_client_certificate.

    http {
      upstream wso2.is.com{
        server localhost:9443;
      # HTTPS server
      server {
        listen 443 ssl;
        server_name localhost;
        #nginx certificate
        ssl_certificate /usr/local/etc/nginx/ssl/nginx.pem;
        #nginx key
        ssl_certificate_key /usr/local/etc/nginx/ssl/key.pem;
        #certificate of the client
        ssl_client_certificate /usr/local/etc/nginx/ssl/certificate.pem;
        ssl_session_timeout 50m;
        ssl_protocols TLSv1 TLSv1.1 TLSv1.2;
        ssl_ciphers HIGH:!aNULL:!MD5;
        ssl_verify_client on;
        ssl_prefer_server_ciphers on;
        location / {
          #to enable the nginx to pass request header
          proxy_pass_request_headers on;
          proxy_set_header X-HTTPS-Protocol $ssl_protocol;
          proxy_set_header X-SSL-CERT $ssl_client_cert;
          proxy_pass https:/wso2.is.com;

Configure the Proxy Port in IS nodes

By default, WSO2 Identity Server runs on the 9443 port. The following steps describe how you can configure a proxy port to 443.

  1. Open the catalina-server.xml file in <IS Home>/repository/conf/tomcat/ and add the proxy port 443 in the https connector as follows.

    <Connector protocol="org.apache.coyote.http11.Http11NioProtocol"
    	port= "9443"
  2. Configure the proxy port and host it in the site.json file in <IS-HOME>/repository/deployment/server/jaggeryapps/dashboard/conf/ as follows.

  3. Configure the proxy port and host it in the site.json file in <IS-HOME>/repository/deployment/server/jaggeryapps/portal/conf/ as follows.

  4. Configure the proxy port and host in the web.xml file in <IS-HOME>/repository/deployment/server/webapps/shindig/WEB-INF/ as follows.

    	<param-name> system.properties </param-name>

Change the authentication endpoint in the Travelocity sample

Since the NGINX listens to port 443, we need to change the authentication endpoint of the client.

Go to  travelocity  properties in  <Catalina_Home>/Webapps/travelocity.com/WEB-INF/classes and set SAML2.IdPURL to https://localhost:443/samlsso as shown below. 

#The URL of the SAML 2.0 Identity Provider

Configure X509 Authenticator in WSO2 Identity Server

Follow the steps mentioned here in order to configure X509 Authenticator.

Add the X509 Authentication Valve to WSO2 Identity Server

  1. Get a git clone by executing the following command in the terminal

    git clone https://github.com/wso2-extensions/identity-x509-commons.git
  2. If the current branch is not the master, checkout from the master as follows. 

    git branch checkout master	
  3. Build the component.

    mvn clean install
  4. Copy the org.wso2.carbon.extension.identity.authenticator.x509Certificate.valve-1.0.4-SNAPSHOT.jar file in /identity-x509-revocation/component/valve/target into <IS_HOME>/repository/components/dropins/. (Check whether the version of x509revocation component in the IS pack and change its version to 1.0.4-SNAPSHOT).

  5. Open catalina.xml in <IS_HOME>/repository/conf/tomcat/directory and add the new valve in the configuration file. 

    Valve name = <Valve className=”org.wso2.carbon.extension.identity.x509Certificate.valve.X509CertificateAuthenticationValve”/>

  6. Configure in identity.xml file in  <IS_HOME>/repository/conf/identity by adding the value of the certificate configured in NGINX within  <X509RequestHeaderName>.

    <!--X509 Certificate based authentication configuration-->
       <!--HTTP request header name which passes the X509Certificate  from LB-->
  7.  Now run the travelocity sample and it will be authenticated using X509 Certificate when SSL termination is configured.

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