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API authentication

Describes how to secure requests to the APIs with OpenID Connect and Bearer Tokens (JWT).

You should secure requests to the APIs with OpenID Connect and Bearer Tokens (JWT) by either of the following methods.

  • Configure the application to use an external login provider and enable the JWT Bearer token middleware.
  • Use the implementation based on OpenIddict, ASP.NET Identity, and Entity Framework. The Optimizely implementation gives you the basic OpenID Connect support and the following grant types/flows:
    • Authorization code – For interactive clients.
    • Client Credentials – For machine-to-machine communication.
    • Resource Owner Password – This flow is disabled by default and you should only use this flow for backward compatibility. This flow is less secure.

Optimizely supports the user info endpoint for retrieving additional user claims.


Install the EPiServer.OpenIDConnect NuGet package from the NuGet feed. You can optionally install EPiServer.OpenIDConnect.UI to get access to an UI where you can revoke authorizations.


public void ConfigureServices(IServiceCollection services)
    // ASP.NET Identity needs to be configured before OpenID Connect

        useDevelopmentCertificate: true, 
        signingCertificate: null, 
        encryptionCertificate: null, 
        createSchema: true, 
        options =>
            // Sample interactive JavaScript application 
            options.Applications.Add(new OpenIDConnectApplication
                ClientId = "frontend",
                Scopes = 
                PostLogoutRedirectUris = { new Uri("http://localhost:8080") },
                RedirectUris =
                    new Uri("http://localhost:8080/login-callback"),
                    new Uri("http://localhost:8080/login-renewal"),

            // Sample application using Client Credentials to make
            // machine-to-machine API calls
            options.Applications.Add(new OpenIDConnectApplication
                ClientId = "cli",
                ClientSecret = "cli",
                Scopes = { ContentDefinitionsApiOptionsDefaults.Scope }, // Default scope from Content Definitions API

    // If you have installed EPiServer.OpenIDConnect.UI

In production, provide a certificate in the form of a X509Certificate2 for signing and encrypting tokens. During development, OpenIddict provides one automatically if useDevelopmentCertificate is set to true. If the application is running in DXP, then we will provide certificates automatically via the EPiServer.CloudPlatform.Cms package in version 1.3.0 or later:

var certificates = EPiServer.CloudPlatform.Cms.Certificates.CertificatesProvider.Get(_configuration);

    useDevelopmentCertificate: false,
    createSchema: true);

You can extend the Entity Framework entities OpenIddict and ASP.NET Identity uses for managing applications and users. If you chose to do so, you should disable automatic schema creation and rely on migrations directly from Entity Framework instead.

When configuring our APIs, use the OpenIDConnectOptionsDefaults.AuthenticationScheme constant as the authentication scheme.  Authentication scheme is the first parameter in each method that adds the API.

public void ConfigureServices(IServiceCollection services)

This scheme can also be used in your own web API endpoints.

public class MyApiController : ControllerBase