sproxy: HTTP proxy for authenticating users via OAuth2

[ deprecated, mit, program, web ] [ Propose Tags ]
Deprecated in favor of sproxy2

This version is no longer supported. Have a look at Sproxy2 (http:/hackage.haskell.orgpackage/sproxy2), which goes far beyond Sproxy's features and limitations.

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Versions [RSS] 0.9.4, 0.9.5, 0.9.6, 0.9.7,, 0.9.8, 0.9.9
Change log ChangeLog.md
Dependencies aeson (>=, attoparsec, base (>=4.8 && <5), base64-bytestring, bytestring, containers (>=0.5), data-default, docopt (>=0.7), entropy, http-conduit (>=2.1.8), http-kit (>=0.5), http-types (>=0.8.5), interpolatedstring-perl6, network, postgresql-simple, resource-pool, SHA, split, text, time, tls (>=1.3.3), unix, utf8-string, x509, yaml (>=0.8) [details]
License MIT
Copyright 2013-2016, Zalora South East Asia Pte. Ltd
Author Chris Forno <jekor@jekor.com> , Igor Pashev <pashev.igor@gmail.com>
Maintainer Igor Pashev <pashev.igor@gmail.com>
Category Web
Source repo head: git clone https://github.com/zalora/sproxy.git
Uploaded by ip1981 at 2016-11-20T10:04:00Z
Reverse Dependencies 1 direct, 0 indirect [details]
Executables sproxy
Downloads 4439 total (19 in the last 30 days)
Rating (no votes yet) [estimated by Bayesian average]
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Status Docs not available [build log]
Last success reported on 2016-11-20 [all 3 reports]

Readme for sproxy-0.9.9

[back to package description]

Sproxy - HTTP proxy for authenticating users via OAuth2


Why use a proxy for doing OAuth? Isn't that up to the application?

  • sproxy is secure by default. No requests make it to the web server if they haven't been explicitly whitelisted.
  • sproxy is independent. Any web application written in any language can use it.

Use cases

  • Existing web applications with concept of roles. For example, Mediawiki, Jenkins, Icinga Web 2. In this case you configure Sproxy to allow unrestricted access to the application for some groups defined by Sproxy. These groups are mapped to the application roles. There is a plugin for Jenkins which can be used for this. Mediawiki and Icinga Web 2 were also successfully deployed in this way, though it required changes to their source code.

  • New web applications designed to work specifically behind Sproxy. In this case you define Sproxy rules to control access to the application's API. It would likely be a single-page application. Examples are MyWatch and Juan de la Cosa

How it works

When an HTTP client makes a request, Sproxy checks for a session cookie. If it doesn't exist (or it's invalid, expired), it responses with HTTP status 511 with the page, where the user can choose an OAuth2 provider to authenticate with. Finally, we store the the email address in a session cookie: signed with a hash to prevent tampering, set for HTTP only (to prevent malicious JavaScript from reading it), and set it for secure (since we don't want it traveling over plaintext HTTP connections).

From that point on, when sproxy detects a valid session cookie it extracts the email, checks it against the access rules, and relays the request to the back-end server (if allowed).


Hitting the endpoint /sproxy/logout will invalidate the session cookie. The user will be redirected to / after logout. The query parameter state can be provided to specify an alternate URL-encoded redirect path


Since all sproxied resources are private, it doesn't make sense for web crawlers to try to index them. In fact, crawlers will index only the login page. To prevent this, sproxy returns the following for /robots.txt:

User-agent: *
Disallow: /

Permissions system

Permissions are stored in a PostgreSQL database. See sproxy.sql for details. Here are the main concepts:

  • A group is identified by a name. Every group has
    • members (identified by email address, through group_member) and
    • associated privileges (through group_privilege).
  • A privilege is identified by a name and a domain. It has associated rules (through privilege_rule) that define what the privilege gives access to.
  • A rule is a combination of sql patterns for a domain, a path and an HTTP method. A rule matches an HTTP request, if all of these components match the respective attributes of the request. However of all the matching rules only the rule with the longest path pattern will be used to determine whether a user is allowed to perform a request. This is often a bit surprising, please see the following example:

Privileges example

Consider this group_privilege and privilege_rule relations:

group privilege domain
readers basic wiki.example.com
readers read wiki.example.com
editors basic wiki.example.com
editors read wiki.example.com
editors edit wiki.example.com
administrators basic wiki.example.com
administrators read wiki.example.com
administrators edit wiki.example.com
administrators admin wiki.example.com
privilege domain path method
basic wiki.example.com /% GET
read wiki.example.com /wiki/% GET
edit wiki.example.com /wiki/edit/% %
admin wiki.example.com /admin/% %

With this setup, everybody (that is readers, editors and administratorss) will have access to e.g. /imgs/logo.png and /favicon.ico, but only administrators will have access to /admin/index.php, because the longest matching path pattern is /admin/% and only administrators have the admin privilege.

Likewise readers have no access to e.g. /wiki/edit/delete_everything.php.

HTTP headers passed to the back-end server:

header value
From: visitor's email address
X-Groups: all groups that granted access to this resource, separated by commas (see the note below)
X-Given-Name: the visitor's given (first) name
X-Family-Name: the visitor's family (last) name
X-Forwarded-Proto: the visitor's protocol of an HTTP request, always https
X-Forwarded-For the visitor's IP address (added to the end of the list if header is already present in client request)

X-Groups denotes an intersection of the groups the visitor belongs to and the groups that granted access:

Visitor's groups Granted groups X-Groups
all all, devops all
all, devops all all
all, devops all, devops all,devops
all, devops devops devops
devops all, devops devops
devops all Access denied

Configuration file

By default sproxy will read its configuration from config/sproxy.yml. There is example file with documentation config/sproxy.yml.example. You can specify a custom path with:

sproxy --config /path/to/sproxy.yml