I'm having a really difficult time trying to get my Sharepoint site to use Forms Authentication. I've tried using an ActiveDirectoryMembershipProvder and the LDAP equivalent but both of them seem absolutely unable to find any users from ActiveDirectory in any of the "peoplefinder" type of areas.

In Web.config for the admin section I have this:

<membership defaultProvider="ADMembershipProvider">
 <add   name="ADMembershipProvider"
        type="System.Web.Security.ActiveDirectoryMembershipProvider, System.Web, Version=,  Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=b03f5f7f11d50a3a"
        connectionStringName="ADConnectionString" /> 

And then a little later this:

    <add name="ADConnectionString" connectionString="LDAP://dc.ourcompany.com/dc=ourcompany,dc=com,ou=Ourcompany,ou=UK,ou=Townville,ou=Users" />

The content of the connectionstring is right out of ADExplorer, but whether that makes it right or not, I don't really know, AD is not my speciality.

I have tried having the user specifed in the <provider> tag and not, neither of which appears to have caused a problem.

When I try to add a user to the site that I am configuring this authentication on, I cannot make it find anyone from the domain. I have tried the following ways of saying it:

  • ADMembershipProvider:username
  • ADMembershipProvider:username@ourcompany.com
  • ADMembershipProvider:OURCOMPANY\username
  • username@ourcompany.com
  • OURCOMPANY\username
  • username

None of those appear to have made any difference.

The really frustrating thing is that neither Sharepoint's logs ( set to Verbose and my god to they mean that ) nor the system Event Log seem to give any indication of a problem, they just don't do anything.

Is there an obvious problem here and if not, is there an easy way I can break things down a little to figure out where in the process it is failing?

  • My assumption is you are trying to authenticate AD users externally, otherwise you shouldn't be using FBA. If you have ISA Server, it can handle this process for you. – shufler Sep 4 '09 at 23:53
  • I was actually trying to authenticate them internally, but needed FBA because I was trying to replicate an issue that a customer was having with some software that talks to sharepoint. – glenatron Nov 11 '09 at 13:12

I recently set up FBA for my site. I followed this document and it was absolutely flawless. I faced the similar issue you faced but i found out later that i did some mistakes in configuring it the CA's configurationn file.

  • This looks really helpful. I've not done anything with this for a fwe months, but I'm going to call this the answer... – glenatron Feb 23 '10 at 16:49

Have you tried following this document?


Have you ensured your provider name is set in your PeoplePickerWildcards element in the web.config? i.e.:

  <clear />
  <add key="ADMembershipProvider" value="%" />

This will need to be set in the web.config for the application and the necessary entries made in the web.config for the WSS admin application if you are trying to set up anything there.

  • I was really excited by this response because it sounded like another useful avenue, but it turns out that I had done that already :( – glenatron Jul 13 '09 at 9:06

Well, I think for the user@company.com you'll need to add the attribute attributeMapUsername to the provider string. Typically I use "userPrincipleName" for user@company.com and "sAMAccountName" for "domain\user" setups. At least I think that's the relationship, but I don't have the code handy to double check. There could be other reasonable settings for related scenarios, but I'm not certain what they'd be.

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