In this article I’m going to introduce our project self-registration of users via UCS Self Services, which we have just implemented for SUSE Software Solutions Germany GmbH and their Bugzilla and openSUSE Build Service (OBS). The OBS platform is mainly used to develop the openSUSE Linux distribution, but also helps to build packages for Fedora, Debian GNU/Linux, Ubuntu and, of course, SUSE Linux Enterprise. At the time of writing this article, the openSUSE Build Service hosts about 26,000 projects, approximately 190,000 packages in 36,000 repositories. About 33,000 developers use the service and have registered an account.
At the end of last year SUSE started planning to move its Bugzilla and OBS platforms to a new server, and the operators thought it would be a good idea to implement a new solution for managing the large number of accounts at the same time. After checking out a number of identity management systems they decided to go for Univention Corporate Server. However, SUSE as a platform vendor was missing something in UCS: a feature that would allow users to create (and delete) their own accounts. They really wanted to minimize the administration effort on their end and make it easy for interested and potential users to access Bugzilla and OBS at the same time.
Our developers quickly implemented the new feature on behalf of SUSE. They thought the self-registration was a great idea, so they later included it in the official version of Univention Corporate Server. It is now available for all UCS versions (4.4-4 or newer). In this blog post I would like to introduce the new self-registration function and then show step by step how administrators configure UCS machines so that users can create and delete their own accounts via the Univention portal.
Enable and configure the Page Create an account
In order to enable the page Create an account for the Univention portal on individual hosts (where the Self Service app is installed), administrators have to activate the Univention Configuration Registry (UCR) variable:
umc/self-service/account-registration/frontend/enabled=true. You can access the UCR variables via System in the Univention Management Console.
Tip: You can change the UCR variables on the command-line if you prefer.
Next, it’s time to configure various other aspects of the Create an account page that the users see during registration. You can adjust several UCR variables on the system(s) which are being defined as Self Service backend in the
This activates the account registration on a UCS machine.
This variable specifies a user template (section 6.7) that will be used for the creation of self-registered accounts.
Defines a container in which the self-registered users are created.
This variable configures the UDM attributes of a user account which are shown on the Create an account page. The names of the UDM attributes must be provided as a comma-separated list.
Defines which of the UDM attributes defined in
umc/self-service/account-registration/udm_attributesare required, i.e. must be provided by a user. The names of the UDM attributes must be given as a comma-separated list.
Configure the verification Email
After users have clicked on Create account, they see a message that the system has sent an email for the account verification.
Various UCR variables define what this email looks like, for example, the name of the sender address, the content, etc.:
This variable configures the hostname in the verification link URL. The default is to use the FQDN of the Self Service backend defined in
Defines the sender address of the verification email. The default is: “Account Verification Service <noreply@FQDN>”
Sets the server name or the IP address of the mail server.
The complete path to a text file that will be used in the mail’s body. You can find the default message in
/usr/lib/python2.7/dist-packages/univention/management/console/modules/passwordreset/sending/verification_email_body.txtand use the file as template for your own messages. It uses the following strings which will be substituted accordingly:
Defines the number of characters that is used for the verification token (default: 64).
Last, but not least, you get to configure the Account verification page for the users.