Using Apache as a BasicAuth proxy to an internal resource
This article isn’t named ideally so if you have a better title, tell me.
This is the scenario: we have a simple HTTP resource on the internal network at Mocra. This resource is a closed source tool which is great except that it has one drawback — there are only two security modes: basic authentication on, or basic authentication off. There is only one username/password and you can’t control when or by whom it is required.
Now, my preferred behaviour here is to be able to give out multiple login/passwords and also to only require authentication outside of our local network. I set out to get this working.
I devised this solution a few months ago (which is why it’s using Apache at all) but I thought it might be of some use to someone. I created an Apache VirtualHost to act as a proxy between this resource and its clients. It looks like this:
# This virtual host proxies requests for the internal resource
# Set auth header to base64 encoded 'username:password'
# where username and password are the credentials for internal resource
RequestHeader set Authorization "Basic dXNlcm5hbWU6cGFzc3dvcmQ="
ProxyPass /resource_path/ http://192.168.1.123:1337/resource_path/
ProxyPassReverse /resource_path/ http://192.168.1.123:1337/resource_path/
Allow from 192.168.1.0/24 # our local subnet
Allow from 127.0.0.1 # duh
Allow from 126.96.36.199 # our external router IP
AuthName "Our Internal Resource"
# where all the external login/passwords are
# this is the secret sauce that allows EITHER
# local access or Basic Auth access
RewriteRule ^/?$ http://external.resource.com:80/resource_path/ [R]