After a long session going around in circles, I think I have cracked this particular nut!
Yes indeed – I now have been able to create accounts on a WordPress site, hook those accounts up to use a GAFYD as OpenID to log in to WordPress using the same credentials as the email hosted at Google (under a custom domain.)
How does it work? I’m glad I asked!
The key part of the puzzle was to use the Janrain WordPress plugin that uses RPX discovery. Yeah, ‘RPX discovery’ sounds like gibberish but it is really important. Google have created their own discovery mechanism (read about it from the creator of the WP OpenID plugin) which just makes things just a little more difficult from our point of view.
In any case, once the RPX plugin is installed it will prompt you to create an account at http://rpxnow.com/ which is both painless and takes only seconds.
Next we will have to manually set the users up in WordPress. So create your new WordPress user, make a password (and yes, you do still need a strong password here because it remains a way to login to your WordPress site for the users.) I chose not to email the password out to the user, as the goal here is to present a single sign on solution.
Moving along – log yourself out of WordPress and log back in as the new user you just created. Navigate to the Profile panel for that user in the Administration area. The URL will be something like http://www.yourdomain.com/wp-admin/profile.php Down the bottom of that screen you’ll see an area to select a Sign-in Provider. The key is to select OpenID, then enter the base URL for your domain that is active at Google apps. So you would type http://yourdomain.com in.
Finally you’ll have to sign-in using that OpenID to create the link between this user account on your WordPress install and the account at Google apps which is the single sign on account we want our users to use.
The first time I went around the OpenID authentication I was returned to the from page of my blog with some errros on screen. Ignoring those and going back to the /wp-admin page seems to work fine. For some reason it works out fine after that.
So there you have my solution to use the credentials of your user’s email accounts hosted by Google Apps For Your Domain (GAFYD) to log into a WordPress blog. Feedback is more than welcome, comments, tweaks, suggestions all. Get connecting!
P.S. A friend of mine has found a differing solution, WordPress.com for your domain – where you host your website at WordPress.com, still allowing Google to handle your email with GAFYD. This does not offer a single sign on, however you do get a website plus email for only $US10 per year. Great work Jodie!
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