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Man Pages


Manual Reference Pages  -  LIBTACPLUS (3)

NAME

libtacplus - TACACS+ client library

CONTENTS

Synopsis
Description
Initialization
Creating A Tacacs+ Authentication Request
Creating A Tacacs+ Authorization Request
Creating A Tacacs+ Accounting Request
Setting Optional Parameters On A Request
Sending The Authentication Request And Receiving The Response
Extracting Information From The Server’s Authentication Response
Sending Authentication Continue Packets
Sending The Authorization Request And Receiving The Response
Sending The Accounting Request And Receiving The Response
Extracting Information From The Server’s Authorization Response
Obtaining Error Messages
Cleanup
Return Values
Files
See Also
Authors

SYNOPSIS


.In taclib.h int tac_add_server struct tac_handle *h const char *host int port const char *secret int timeout int flags void tac_clear_avs struct tac_handle *h void tac_close struct tac_handle *h int tac_config struct tac_handle *h const char *path int tac_create_authen struct tac_handle *h int action int type int service int tac_create_author struct tac_handle *h int method int type int service int tac_create_acct struct tac_handle *h int acct int action int type int service char * tac_get_av struct tac_handle *h u_int index char * tac_get_av_value struct tac_handle *h const char *attribute void * tac_get_data struct tac_handle *h size_t *len char * tac_get_msg struct tac_handle *h struct tac_handle * tac_open void int tac_send_authen struct tac_handle *h int tac_send_author struct tac_handle *h int tac_send_acct struct tac_handle *h int tac_set_av struct tac_handle *h u_int index const char *av_pair int tac_set_data struct tac_handle *h const void *data size_t data_len int tac_set_msg struct tac_handle *h const char *msg int tac_set_port struct tac_handle *h const char *port int tac_set_priv struct tac_handle *h int priv int tac_set_rem_addr struct tac_handle *h const char *addr int tac_set_user struct tac_handle *h const char *user const char * tac_strerror struct tac_handle *h

DESCRIPTION

The libtacplus library implements the client side of the TACACS+ network access control protocol. TACACS+ allows clients to perform authentication, authorization, and accounting by means of network requests to remote servers. This library currently supports only the authentication and authorization portion of the protocol.

INITIALIZATION

To use the library, an application must first call tac_open to obtain a struct tac_handle *, which provides context for subsequent operations. Calls to tac_open always succeed unless insufficient virtual memory is available. If the necessary memory cannot be allocated, tac_open returns NULL.

Before issuing any TACACS+ requests, the library must be made aware of the servers it can contact. The easiest way to configure the library is to call tac_config. tac_config causes the library to read a configuration file whose format is described in tacplus.conf(5). The pathname of the configuration file is passed as the file argument to tac_config. This argument may also be given as NULL, in which case the standard configuration file /etc/tacplus.conf is used. tac_config returns 0 on success, or -1 if an error occurs.

The library can also be configured programmatically by calls to tac_add_server. The host parameter specifies the server host, either as a fully qualified domain name or as a dotted-quad IP address in text form. The port parameter specifies the TCP port to contact on the server. If port is given as 0, the library uses port 49, the standard TACACS+ port. The shared secret for the server host is passed to the secret parameter. It may be any null-terminated string of bytes. The timeout for receiving replies from the server is passed to the timeout parameter, in units of seconds. The flags parameter is a bit mask of flags to specify various characteristics of the server. It may contain:
TAC_SRVR_SINGLE_CONNECT
  Causes the library to attempt to negotiate single connection mode when communicating with the server. In single connection mode, the original TCP connection is held open for multiple TACACS+ sessions. Older servers do not support this mode, and some of them become confused if the client attempts to negotiate it.

tac_add_server returns 0 on success, or -1 if an error occurs.

tac_add_server may be called multiple times, and it may be used together with tac_config. At most 10 servers may be specified. When multiple servers are given, they are tried in round-robin fashion until a working, accessible server is found. Once the library finds such a server, it continues to use it as long as it works.

CREATING A TACACS+ AUTHENTICATION REQUEST

To begin constructing a new authentication request, call tac_create_authen. The action, type, and service arguments must be set to appropriate values as defined in the TACACS+ protocol specification. The
.In taclib.h header file contains symbolic constants for these values.

CREATING A TACACS+ AUTHORIZATION REQUEST

To begin constructing a new authorization request, call tac_create_author. The method, type, and service arguments must be set to appropriate values as defined in the TACACS+ protocol specification. The
.In taclib.h header file contains symbolic constants for these values.

CREATING A TACACS+ ACCOUNTING REQUEST

To begin constructing a new accounting request, call tac_create_acct. The acct, action, type, and service arguments must be set to appropriate values as defined in the TACACS+ protocol specification. The
.In taclib.h header file contains symbolic constants for these values.

SETTING OPTIONAL PARAMETERS ON A REQUEST

After creating a request, various optional parameters may be attached to it through calls to tac_set_av, tac_set_data, tac_set_port, tac_set_priv, tac_set_rem_addr, and tac_set_user. The library creates its own copies of any strings provided to these functions, so that it is not necessary for the caller to preserve them. By default, each of these parameters is empty except for the privilege level, which defaults to USER’ privilege.

tac_set_av only applies to the context of an authorization request. The format for an attribute value pair is defined in the TACACS+ protocol specification. The index specified can be any value between 0 and 255 inclusive and indicates the position in the list to place the attribute value pair. Calling tac_set_av with same index twice effectively replaces the value at that position. Use tac_clear_avs to clear all attribute value pairs that may have been set.

SENDING THE AUTHENTICATION REQUEST AND RECEIVING THE RESPONSE

After the TACACS+ authentication request has been constructed, it is sent by means of tac_send_authen. This function connects to a server if not already connected, sends the request, and waits for a reply. On failure, tac_send_authen returns -1. Otherwise, it returns the TACACS+ status code and flags, packed into an integer value. The status can be extracted using the macro TAC_AUTHEN_STATUS. Possible status codes, defined in
.In taclib.h , include:

TAC_AUTHEN_STATUS_PASS
TAC_AUTHEN_STATUS_FAIL
TAC_AUTHEN_STATUS_GETDATA
TAC_AUTHEN_STATUS_GETUSER
TAC_AUTHEN_STATUS_GETPASS
TAC_AUTHEN_STATUS_RESTART
TAC_AUTHEN_STATUS_ERROR
TAC_AUTHEN_STATUS_FOLLOW

The only flag is the no-echo flag, which can be tested using the macro TAC_AUTHEN_NOECHO.

EXTRACTING INFORMATION FROM THE SERVER’S AUTHENTICATION RESPONSE

An authentication response packet from the server may contain a server message, a data string, or both. After a successful call to tac_send_authen, this information may be retrieved from the response by calling tac_get_msg and tac_get_data. These functions return dynamically-allocated copies of the information from the packet. The caller is responsible for freeing the copies when it no longer needs them. The data returned from these functions is guaranteed to be terminated by a null byte.

In the case of tac_get_data, the len argument points to a location into which the library will store the actual length of the received data, not including the null terminator. This argument may be given as NULL if the caller is not interested in the length.

SENDING AUTHENTICATION CONTINUE PACKETS

If tac_send_authen returns a value containing one of the status codes TAC_AUTHEN_STATUS_GETDATA, TAC_AUTHEN_STATUS_GETUSER, or TAC_AUTHEN_STATUS_GETPASS, then the client must provide additional information to the server by means of a TACACS+ CONTINUE packet. To do so, the application must first set the packet’s user message and/or data fields using tac_set_msg and tac_set_data. The client then sends the CONTINUE packet with tac_send_authen. N.B., tac_create_authen should not be called to construct a CONTINUE packet; it is used only for the initial authentication request.

When it receives the CONTINUE packet, the server may again request more information by returning TAC_AUTHEN_STATUS_GETDATA, TAC_AUTHEN_STATUS_GETUSER, or TAC_AUTHEN_STATUS_GETPASS. The application should send further CONTINUEs until some other status is received from the server.

SENDING THE AUTHORIZATION REQUEST AND RECEIVING THE RESPONSE

After the TACACS+ authorization request has been constructed, it is sent by means of tac_send_author. This function connects to a server if not already connected, sends the request, and waits for a reply. On failure, tac_send_author returns -1. Otherwise, it returns the TACACS+ status code and number of attribute value (AV) pairs received packed into an integer value. The status can be extracted using the macro TAC_AUTHOR_STATUS. Possible status codes, defined in
.In taclib.h , include:

TAC_AUTHOR_STATUS_PASS_ADD
TAC_AUTHOR_STATUS_PASS_REPL
TAC_AUTHOR_STATUS_FAIL
TAC_AUTHOR_STATUS_ERROR

The number of AV pairs received is obtained using TAC_AUTHEN_AV_COUNT.

SENDING THE ACCOUNTING REQUEST AND RECEIVING THE RESPONSE

After the TACACS+ authorization request has been constructed, it is sent by means of tac_send_acct. This function connects to a server if not already connected, sends the request, and waits for a reply. On failure, tac_send_acct returns -1. Otherwise, it returns the TACACS+ status code. Possible status codes, defined in
.In taclib.h , include:

TAC_ACCT_STATUS_SUCCESS
TAC_ACCT_STATUS_ERROR
TAC_ACCT_STATUS_FOLLOW

EXTRACTING INFORMATION FROM THE SERVER’S AUTHORIZATION RESPONSE

Like an authentication response packet, an authorization response packet from the server may contain a server message, a data string, or both. Refer to EXTRACTING INFORMATION FROM THE SERVER’S AUTHENTICATION RESPONSE for instruction on extraction of those values.

An authorization response packet from the server may also contain attribute value (AV) pairs. To extract these, use tac_get_av or tac_get_av_value. tac_get_av takes the index of the AV pair as it is positioned in the list. The indexes start at 0 (use TAC_AUTHEN_AV_COUNT on the return value of tac_send_author to get the total number of items in this list). Alternatively, tac_get_av_value can be used. tac_get_av_value takes the attribute name and returns the corresponding value only, not the AV pair. These functions return dynamically-allocated copies of the information from the packet. The caller is responsible for freeing the copies when it no longer needs them. The data returned from these functions is guaranteed to be terminated by a null byte.

OBTAINING ERROR MESSAGES

Those functions which accept a struct tac_handle * argument record an error message if they fail. The error message can be retrieved by calling tac_strerror. The message text is overwritten on each new error for the given struct tac_handle *. Thus the message must be copied if it is to be preserved through subsequent library calls using the same handle.

CLEANUP

To free the resources used by the TACACS+ library, call tac_close.

RETURN VALUES

The following functions return a non-negative value on success. If they detect an error, they return -1 and record an error message which can be retrieved using tac_strerror.

tac_add_server
tac_config
tac_create_authen
tac_create_author
tac_create_acct
tac_send_authen
tac_send_author
tac_send_acct
tac_set_av
tac_set_data
tac_set_msg
tac_set_port
tac_set_priv
tac_set_rem_addr
tac_set_user

The following functions return a non- NULL pointer on success. If they are unable to allocate sufficient virtual memory, they return NULL and record an error message which can be retrieved using tac_strerror.

tac_get_av
tac_get_av_value
tac_get_data
tac_get_msg

The following functions return a non- NULL pointer on success. If they are unable to allocate sufficient virtual memory, they return NULL, without recording an error message.

tac_open

FILES

/etc/tacplus.conf
 

SEE ALSO

tacplus.conf(5)
.Rs The TACACS+ Protocol, Version 1.78
.Re

AUTHORS


.An -nosplit This software was written by
.An John Polstra and
.An Paul Fraley , and donated to the
.Fx project by Juniper Networks, Inc.
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