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How to get REMOTE_USER Environment Variable

Posted on 1998-12-07
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Last Modified: 2013-11-24
When using Netscape Serever's security,
it pops up a dialog box.  When the person's
login is validated, the login name is stored
it the browser environment variable REMOTE_USER.
This can be grabbed using CGI.  My problem is that
I hava a java applet that needs to know who
the validated user is.  Anybody know how I can
get this variable in Java, or pass it as a
parameter to the applet using javascript or something?
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Question by:revferret
7 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:evijay
ID: 1228877
one way is to write a cgi program/java servlet which you invoke from java applet and that program/servlet returns you the remove user name. This is the only way also to get any client certificates of the browser.

Vijay

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Expert Comment

by:GregL
ID: 1228878
Try HttpServletRequest.getHeader( "REMOTE_USER" );
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Author Comment

by:revferret
ID: 1228879
Sorry, but this didn't work.
Java didn't find the class HpptServletRequest, and I don't seem to have any
class libraries that have this?  Do you know which set of libraries have this?
I have imported all the libraries that came with netscape server.
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LVL 7

Expert Comment

by:conick
ID: 1228880
The HttpServletRequest class is part of the Servlet API (its a separate download)
This involves writing a servlet. (its suprisingly easy)
Make sure your server is capable of running servlets
If you decide to do this you can get the Servlet API from:
http://java.sun.com/products/servlet/index.html


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LVL 16

Expert Comment

by:heyhey_
ID: 1228881
>> ... This can be grabbed using CGI. ...

you sure need some kind of server support ...
 evijay suggests to use a simple CGI, and GregL suggests to use servlets (which is some kinf of Java CGI)... in both cases you need a server program (CGI) that will give your applet the  REMOTE_USER variable (the applet simply sends "Give me the value of REMOTE_USER" and the CGI returns it).

hope this helps
  heyhey

P.S.
i just sow that line
>> it the browser environment variable REMOTE_USER.
if you browser can see this variable (if it is client variable, not server variable) you can use JavaScript and give this value as applet parameter.
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LVL 7

Accepted Solution

by:
yoren earned 100 total points
ID: 1228882
REMOTE_USER is a server environment variable, not a browser variable. This is an important distinction. Keep reading.

It sounds like you have a CGI program which is returning a page containing an applet. If this is the case, your CGI program should dynamically add an applet parameter that contains the value of REMOTE_USER. If your CGI program is written in Perl, it will look something like this:

print "<APPLET...>\n";
print "<PARAM NAME=\"REMOTE_USER\" VALUE=\"$ENV{'REMOTE_USER'}\">\n";
print "</APPLET>\n";

Then use Applet.getParameter() in your applet to retrieve the value.

BUT BE WARNED: Don't use this as your method of security, because it would be very easy for a hacker to crack this security. You should assume that anyone who can run the CGI can pretend to be anyone else who can run the CGI.

Yuval
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Author Comment

by:revferret
ID: 1228883
Thanks for the suggestion, but I figured out how to write a WAI application
and register it as a service with the Web Server.  My applet just calls this
service and then the REMOTE_USER is returned to the applet.

Thanks all for the help!
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