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Note: You are currently viewing documentation for Moodle 1.9. Up-to-date documentation for the latest stable version is available here: Authentication.

I just added Guest Login Button (You can hide or show the guest login button on the login page) it's not clear if this just hides the button, or if hiding the button means that guest access is effectively useless.

Hopefully the extra sentence I just added makes things clear now ;-) --Helen Foster 12:18, 26 June 2008 (CDT)

Comments on re-organizing this page

The primary authentication page is an introduction to this subject. Authentication is a menu item that only has sub menus in the administration block. Thusly, this page should be an introduction to this concept, outline each of the sub menus, have lots of links, not a lot of how to, a few examples of concepts, many references in See also (including FAQ link), and perhaps be the heading for link on a template called Authentication.

Chris's working notes

Here are Chris's working notes that will form an introduction to Authentication. Typically, this will be no more than 3 sentences , with a second short paragraph that provides some context for breaking Authentication into sub menus, hopefully with a very simple example.

Definition: From authenticate and the greek "authentikos, 'principal, genuine'." or

  • Authentication is the process of determining whether someone or something is actually who or what it asserts itself to be, the process confirms that the identification of the individual or data is accurate.
    • Authorization is the process of determining what types of activities are permitted by a user. Usually, authorization is in the context of authentication: once you have authenticated a user, they may be authorized different types of access or activity.
    • Roles are part of the authorization process that permits a user to perform certain activities. Permissions are specific task authorizations that a user may or may not be allowed to perform (inclucing viewing and changing).
    • Enrolment in a course is acheived by assigning a role to a user in the course context.

Authentication, roles & permissions and enrolment. The authentication starts when a user enters a Moodle site. Most users think of the login screen as the first step in authentication of a user. After authentication, Moodle will give an initial set of authorizations to a user by assigning them an initial role. A user entering into a new or different context (for example a course) will assume certain permissions based upon their role which was given to them by some authorization process. A user who loses their authentication loses all authority and any previous roles.


Hi Chris, firstly a really big THANK YOU for your ideas and suggestions for the authentication documentation :-)
Re. an introduction to authentication, I'd like to keep things as simple as possible. Isn't what we already have sufficient? ("... user authentication i.e. enabling people to login to your Moodle site").
Re. the authentication submenus in Moodle, actually the number of submenus depends upon the number of plugins enabled on the manage authentication page.
I suggested in the manage authentication page comments that we only have one page for authentication/managing authentication, but after considering your authentication draft and comments, I can see the case for having two pages - Authentication (introduction and overview) and Manage authentication (setting the authentication method, common settings etc.).
I suggest we keep the bulleted list of authentication methods on the authentication page, perhaps with a little explanation of each method, for example:
Good idea --chris collman 10:56, 30 July 2008 (CDT)because we like to keep the overview as simple as possible as a best practice.
What do you think of my suggestions? --Helen Foster 07:56, 30 July 2008 (CDT)
PS I'm not sure we need a template, as we have a Category:Authentication, and Authentication will also contain a list of authentication links. --Helen Foster 08:00, 30 July 2008 (CDT)
That is fine for me. I forgot about the Category and the type of user should be a site administrator and not really a new user or reader of MoodleDocs by this time :) --chris collman 10:56, 30 July 2008 (CDT)