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The jax-rs-pac4j project is an easy and powerful security library for JAX-RS web applications and web services which supports authentication and authorization, but also logout and advanced features like session fixation and CSRF protection. It's based on Java 11, servlet 4 (when present), JAX-RS 2 and on the pac4j security engine v5. It's available under the Apache 2 license.

Main concepts and components:

  1. A client represents an authentication mechanism. It performs the login process and returns a user profile. An indirect client is for UI authentication while a direct client is for web services authentication:

▸ OAuth - SAML - CAS - OpenID Connect - HTTP - OpenID - Google App Engine - LDAP - SQL - JWT - MongoDB - Stormpath - IP address

  1. An authorizer is meant to check authorizations on the authenticated user profile(s) or on the current web context:

▸ Roles / permissions - Anonymous / remember-me / (fully) authenticated - Profile type, attribute - CORS - CSRF - Security headers - IP address, HTTP method

  1. A matcher defines whether the SecurityFilter must be applied and can be used for additional web processing

  2. Filters protect resources and map some of them to login processes.

  • The SecurityFilter protects a resource by checking that the user is authenticated and that the authorizations are valid, according to the clients and authorizers configuration. If the user is not authenticated, it performs authentication for direct clients or starts the login process for indirect clients
  • The CallbackFilter finishes the login process for an indirect client
  • The LogoutFilter logs out the user from the application.

These filters can be directly registered by hand, or instead, the following features can be used.

  1. Generic JAX-RS Providers and Features activate the use of some of the filters on the JAX-RS implementation based on various conditions
  • The Pac4JFeature enables generic JAX-RS based pac4j functionality. The default configuration does not provide session handling (i.e., it will only work with direct clients). The feature registers the following default providers:

    • JaxRsContextFactoryProvider to create the generic pac4j context for JAX-RS
    • JaxRsConfigProvider to provide the pac4j configuration
    • JaxRsSessionStoreProvider to provide the configured pac4j SessionStore
  • The Pac4JSecurityFeature enables annotation-based activation of the filters at the resource method level

  • The Pac4JSecurityFilterFeature activates a global filter that will be applied to every resources.

  1. Container/Implementation-specific Providers and Features extend the basic functionality provided by the generic ones
  • The Pac4JValueFactoryProvider enables injection of the security profile in resource method

  • The Pac4JServletFeature provides session handling (and thus indirect clients support) by replacing the generic JaxRsContextFactoryProvider with ServletJaxRsContextFactoryProvider (for Servlet-based JAX-RS implementations, e.g., Jersey on Netty or Grizzly Servlet, Resteasy on Undertow) and JaxRsSessionStoreProvider with ServletSessionStoreProvider.

  • The Pac4JGrizzlyFeature provides session handling (and thus indirect clients support) by replacing the generic JaxRsContextFactoryProvider with GrizzlyJaxRsContextFactoryProvider (for Grizzly2 without Servlet support) and JaxRsSessionStoreProvider with GrizzlySessionStoreProvider.


1) Add the required dependencies

2) Define:

- the security configuration

- the callback configuration, only for web applications

- the logout configuration

3) Apply security

4) Get the authenticated user profiles


The latest released version is the Maven Central, available in the Maven central repository. The next version is under development.

See the release notes. Learn more by browsing the pac4j documentation and the jax-rs-pac4j Javadoc.

See the migration guide as well.

Need help?

If you need commercial support (premium support or new/specific features), contact us at [email protected].

If you have any questions, want to contribute or be notified about the new releases and security fixes, please subscribe to the following mailing lists:

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