System Administration Guide: Security Services

Authorization Naming and Delegation

An RBAC authorization is a discrete right that can be granted to a role or a user. Authorizations are checked by RBAC-compliant applications before a user gets access to the application or specific operations within the application. This check replaces the tests in conventional UNIX applications for UID=0.

Authorization Naming Conventions

An authorization has a name that is used internally and in files. For example, solaris.admin.usermgr.pswd is the name of an authorization. An authorization has a short description, which appears in the graphical user interfaces (GUIs). For example, Change Passwords is the description of the solaris.admin.usermgr.pswd authorization.

By convention, authorization names consist of the reverse order of the Internet name of the supplier, the subject area, any subareas, and the function. The parts of the authorization name are separated by dots. An example would be com.xyzcorp.device.access. Exceptions to this convention are the authorizations from Sun Microsystems, Inc., which use the prefix solaris instead of an Internet name. The naming convention enables administrators to apply authorizations in a hierarchical fashion. A wildcard (*) can represent any strings to the right of a dot.

Example of Authorization Granularity

As an example of how authorizations are used, consider the following: A user in the Operator role might be limited to the authorization, which provides read but not write access to user configuration files. The System Administrator role naturally has the and the solaris.admin.usermgr.write authorizations for making changes to user files. However, without the solaris.admin.usermgr.pswd authorization, the System Administrator cannot change passwords. The Primary Administrator has all three of these authorizations.

The solaris.admin.usermgr.pswd authorization is required to make password changes in the Solaris Management Console User tool. This authorization is also required for using the password modification options in the smuser, smmultiuser, and smrole commands.

Delegation Authority in Authorizations

An authorization that ends with the suffix grant enables a user or a role to delegate to other users any assigned authorizations that begin with the same prefix.

For example, a role with the authorizations solaris.admin.usermgr.grant and can delegate the authorization to another user. A role with the solaris.admin.usermgr.grant and solaris.admin.usermgr.* authorizations can delegate any of the authorizations with the solaris.admin.usermgr prefix to other users.