Combining WCF and AzMan authorization using EntLib

The code below is a class that authorizes a WCF web service call using EntLib’s AzMan authorization provider:

public sealed class AzManAuthorizationManager : ServiceAuthorizationManager
    private const string OperationContextPrefix = "O:";

    protected override bool CheckAccessCore(OperationContext operationContext)
            // Obtain the requested action from the context.
            string action = operationContext.RequestContext.RequestMessage.Headers.Action;
            // Remove the namespace part from the action.
            action.Substring(action.LastIndexOf(‘/’) + 1);

            // Get the windows claim set that contains the windows identity
            // and use that to authorize.
            foreach (ClaimSet claimSet in operationContext.ServiceSecurityContext.AuthorizationContext.ClaimSets)
                WindowsClaimSet windowsClaimSet = claimSet as WindowsClaimSet;
                if (windowsClaimSet != null)
                    WindowsPrincipal principal = new WindowsPrincipal(windowsClaimSet.WindowsIdentity);
                    IAuthorizationProvider provider = AuthorizationFactory.GetAuthorizationProvider();
                    return provider.Authorize(principal, OperationContextPrefix + action);
        catch (Exception exception)
            if (ExceptionPolicy.HandleException(exception, "Exception in Security"))
        return false;


  • This won’t work with basicHttpBinding, you’ll at least have to use wsHttpBinding.
  • I simply remove the namespace portion of the SOAP action. This is because AzMan doesn’t allow characters like : and / in an operation name.
  • When calling Authorize prefix operations with "O:". Without prefix it will instead try to find a task of the supplied name.
  • EntLib’s WCF Exception Shielding won’t work here, any exception is converted to a SecurityAccessDeniedException so you probably want a specific exception policy that also logs the actual exception (which is what I did).

I hope you find this useful, if not let me know!


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