User Repository

An authentication adapter can pull user information from a variety of repositories:

zend-expressive-authentication provides an interface, Zend\Expressive\Authentication\UserRepositoryInterface, to access this user storage:

namespace Zend\Expressive\Authentication;

interface UserRepositoryInterface
     * Authenticate the credential (username) using a password
     * or using only the credential string (e.g. token based credential)
     * It returns the authenticated user or null.
     * @param string $credential can be also a token
    public function authenticate(string $credential, string $password = null) : ?UserInterface;

It contains only the authenticate() function, to authenticate the user's credential. If authenticated, the result will be a UserInterface instance; otherwise, a null value is returned.

Configure the user repository

In order to use a user repository adapter, we need to configure it. For instance, to consume an htpasswd file, we need to configure the path to the file. Such configuration is provided in the authentication hierarchy provided to your PSR-11 container. We demonstrate examples of such configuration below.

Using Expressive, this configuration can be stored in a file under the /config/autoload/ folder. We suggest to use a .local.php suffix — e.g. /config/autoload/auth.local.php — as local configuration is not stored in the version control system.

You can also provide this configuration using a ConfigProvider.php class. Read this blog post for more information on config providers.

htpasswd configuration

When using the htpasswd user repository implementation, you need only configure the path to the htpasswd file and a realm. The htpasswd file must use bcrypt hash algorithm:

return [
    'authentication' => [
        'realm' => 'insert realm value',
        'htpasswd' => 'insert the path to htpasswd file',

PDO configuration

When using the PDO user repository adapter, you will need to provide PDO connection parameters, as well as information on the table, field names, and a SQL statement for retrieiving user roles:

return [
    'authentication' => [
        'pdo' => [
            'dsn' => '',
            'username' => '',
            'password' => '',
            'table' => 'user table name',
            'field' => [
                'identity' => 'identity field name',
                'password' => 'password field name',
            'sql_get_roles'   => 'SQL to retrieve roles with :identity parameter',
            'sql_get_details' => 'SQL to retrieve user details by :identity',

The required parameters are dsn, table, and field.

The dsn value is the DSN connection string to be used to connect to the database. For instance, using a SQLite database, a typical value is sqlite:/path/to/file.

The username and password parameters are optional parameters used to connect to the database. Depending on the database, these parameters may not be required; e.g. SQLite does not require them.

The table value is the name of the table containing the user credentials.

The field parameter contains the field name of the identity of the user and the user password. The identity of the user can be a username, an email, etc.

The sql_get_roles setting is an optional parameter that contains the SQL query for retrieving the user roles. The identity value must be specified using the placeholder :identity. For instance, if a role is stored in a user table, a typical query might look like the following:

SELECT role FROM user WHERE username = :identity

The sql_get_details parameter is similar to sql_get_roles: it specifies the SQL query for retrieving the user's additional details, if any.

For instance, if a user has an email field this can be returned as additional detail using the following query:

SELECT email FROM user WHERE username = :identity

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