Azure Active Directory authentication in existing project

October 18, 2014

Recently, I needed to add Azure Active directory authentication to an existing web project. There was an automated tool for Visual Studio 2012 but there does not seem to be a similar component for 2013. A lot of the advice I found suggested creating a new project and importing a bit of the code / config from the other application — that’s what I did here. What follows is not a how-to but rather a log of the steps I took to use AAD authentication (mostly for future reference).


First off there are some references that were missing in the project. I needed to add

  1. System.IdentityModel
  2. System.IdentityModelServices

In addition to the system references, the Microsoft Token Validation Extension should be installed from NuGet.


  1. Copy over DatabaseIssuerNameRegistry.cs (I added this under utils)
  2. IssuingAuthorityKey.cs (model\tenant)
  3. Tenant.cs
  4. TenantDbContext.cs
  5. IdentityConfig.cs (This needs to be in the app_start directory)


On your Azure active directory settings you will need to add an application. Click on Applications -> Add -> URL: Localhost:Port (or real URL) and give it the ID of the site you are developing.


Copy over the following config sections replacing any reference to ID / URL with the settings that were applied to the Application added in the Active Directory settings.

  1. configuration\configSections\system.identityModel
  2. configuration\configSections\
  3. configuration\location
  4. configuration.system.identityModel - The DatabaseIssuerNameRegistry should have the fully qualified name of the DatabaseIssuer class.
  5. configuration\system.web\authentication
  6. configuration\system.web\authorization
  8. configuration\appSettings

    1. ida:FederationMetadataLocation - Use your active directory path
    2. ida:Realm
    3. ida:AudienceUri
  9. configuration\system.webServer

Again this is not an exhaustive guide but rather a checklist for making sure the correct code/configuration is included in the existing project.

Ryan Lanciaux

Hi 👋 I'm Ryan Lanciaux. I run Spaceship Studio, LLC. a consultancy specializing in fast and dynamic web and native mobile applications.

I live in Ann Arbor with my wonderful family! In my freetime, I create electronic music.

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