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Eve Negotiable authentication

Project description


An advanced yet easy to use auth module for APIs built on Eve.

The auth class that ships with Eve, BasicAuth, allows users of your API to authenticate with Basic Authentication. The NegotiableAuth class in this package extends this to allow the user to choose from any authentication scheme your API supports. This allows for easy configuration and handling of multiple auth schemes - including schemes like Digest which require negotiation.

NOTE: This package is near-production ready. Before calling it 1.0 it needs better docs and perhaps a bit more tweaking. It is already in use in a number of production systems - but use at your own risk!

Getting Started

The steps are:

  1. Create a handler functions for each scheme you support
  2. Register those functions with AUTH_PARSER
  3. Extend NegotiableAuth and override process_claims()

Step 1 - Create handler functions

To handle a scheme you must define at least one function, usually two, which the authparser library will call. You can name them however you like - authparser calls them user_record_fn and challenge_fn

  • user_record_fn(token, **kwargs)
  • challenge_fn(**kwargs) [optional - see authparser for details, mandatory for schemes like Digest]

This is best described with an example. Let's say you want to handle Bearer token authorization. When the time comes to validate the token, your user_record_fn will be called. So let's create it. I'll call it handle_bearer:

def handle_bearer(token, **kwargs):
    # do stuff to validate the token
    # ...
    # if it checks out, populate the user record:
    record = {
        'user': '',
        'role': 'employee'
    # if there is a problem (if NegotiableAuth sees '_issues' then it will deny access):
    record = {
        '_issues': {
            'token': 'The token has expired.'

    return record

Step 2 - Register the handler functions

The best place to do this is above the class definition you will create in step 3. I will start by creating a file named

from eve_negotiable_auth import NegotiableAuth, AUTH_PARSER
from --wherever you defined your handler-- import handle_bearer

AUTH_PARSER.add_handler('Bearer', handle_bearer)

Now when the time comes, NegotiableAuth will know if it receives a request whose Authorization header has a Bearer token, it will call your handle_bearer() function.

Step 3 - Extend NegotiableAuth and override process_claims()

The NegotiableAuth class is an abstract base class and cannot be used on its own. You must make your own class that inherits from it. There is only one function to override: process_claims().

Building on the we started in step 2:

from eve_negotiable_auth import NegotiableAuth, AUTH_PARSER
from --wherever you defined your handler-- import handle_bearer

class MyAuth(NegotiableAuth):
    def __init__(self):
        super(MyAuth, self).__init__()

    def process_claims(self, claims, allowed_roles, resource, method):
        authorized = 'user' in claims
        role = claims.get('role')

        if resouce = 'salary' and role != 'employer':
            authorized = False

        if resource == 'position' and method != 'GET' and role != 'employer':
            authorized = False

	    return authorized

This is a too-simple example for illustration only. The request will be authorized if user exists in claims, unless the request is for salary then only employers are allowed. If it is a GET request for position, it is allowed for everyone - only employers can POST, PUT, DELETE, etc.

There are many things you can do in your own process_claims(). Please read the Eve docs for more details.

The things you need to know:

  • claims is the record returned from your handler function.
    • If the handler returns falsey, or dict with _issues, it will reject the request before your class's process_claims() is called
    • your process_claims() need only return True or False, depending whether the claims is allowed in or not.
    • As you see, you are in full control of what's in claims and how to determine whether to grant access based on what is in the claims.
  • allowed_roles, resource, and method are passed in from Eve depending on the request and what is in your Eve settings.
  • If you are using Eve's User-Restricted Resource Access, process_claims() is where you will call self.set_request_auth_value()

Wire it into your project

Once you have defined your auth class, add it to your Eve app. When you instantiate the app, pass the class name as the auth param.

app = Eve('app-name', auth=MyAuth)

Beyond the Basics

When NegotiableAuth calls your handler function, it passes the following kwargs to get_user_record()

  • allowed_roles
  • resource
  • method
  • request - the flask request object

When you define that function, have it return an dict with each member a claim (e.g. username, email, role). If the function returns falsey, or a dict that has a member named _issues, then access will be denied. To communicate issues back to the requestor, have _issues be a dict of name/value pairs, for example (this example has just one name/value):

    '_issues': {
        'user': 'This user does not exist.'

get_challenge_header() - passed through to the scheme's challenge_fn

  • request

...more docs coming soon...

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