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SAML stops working

This article walks you through troubleshooting categorical SAML failures, or instances where your SAML configuration stops working suddenly after you've successfully configured it and used it for some time. There are several reasons why these failures happen.

The SAML configuration uses a faulty SSL certificate

One component of the SAML configuration is host validation of the targeted IdP server, which entails uploading and registering the IdP's x509 certificate. If the certificate becomes invalid - expiration, revocation, or rotation - host validation fails for the IdP server. Then, the IdP server fails to respond to requests.

Expired certificate

The most likely cause of an invalid certificate is that it is expired. If that's the case, you must upload a newly generated x509 certificate into your existing SAML configuration.

If you're not sure if your certificate has expired or not, you can check using the following commands:

# return all certificate information
openssl x509 -in server.crt -text -noout

# return only the expiration date
openssl x509 -in server.crt -text -noout -dates

The expiration date appears in the response as notAfter=expiration_date*`.

Rotated certificate

If your certificate isn't expired, verify that it is the same certificate used by the IdP. To do this:

  1. Get information about the certificate your SAML configuration is using:

    # return all certificate information
    openssl x509 -in server.crt -text -noout
  2. Query the certificate seated on the IdP's host:

    openssl s_client -connect <IDP host:PORT> -show-certificates
  3. Verify that the IdP's certificate's proprieties, such as the signature, issuer DN, validity period, subject key identifier, and so on, match those on the SAML configuration's certificate.

If the certificates do not match, upload the correct certificate to your SAML configuration.

Revoked certificate

Check the Certificate Revocation List (CRL) to determine if your certificate has been revoked. A certificate can be irreversibly revoked if the certificate authority (CA) has improperly issued a certificate or if a private key becomes compromised. CRLs are published frequently for hosts, so if your SAML configuration stops working, you can check to see if you're using a revoked certificate. If so, upload a new, valid certificate to your SAML configuration.

There was a change in network routing

A network change can stop networking communication with the Semgrep users' intranet endpoint and the IdP's host, resulting in malfunctioning SAML. To fix this issue, consult your network administrators or run Wireshark to investigate your network traffic. Semgrep Support can provide information on the Wireshark filters that help identify the relevant traffic.

Changes to the SAML login URL or adding a redirect

If your SAML administrator changes the SAML configuration on the IdP side, you must change your Semgrep SAML configuration to match. For example, some of these changes would be updates to the login URL or adding a redirect.

To determine what changes were made, you can use a SAML tracer.

Chrome offers a SAML tracer called SAML-tracer that you can add to your browser.


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