Authentication for privately hosted packages and repositories#

Your private package server or version control system is probably secured with one or more authentication options. In order to allow your project to have access to these packages and repositories you will have to tell Composer how to authenticate with the server that hosts them.

Authentication principles#

Whenever Composer encounters a protected Composer repository it will try to authenticate using already defined credentials first. When none of those credentials apply it will prompt for credentials and save them (or a token if Composer is able to retrieve one).

type Generated by Prompt?
http-basic yes
Inline http-basic no
Custom header no
gitlab-oauth yes
gitlab-token yes
github-oauth yes
bitbucket-oauth yes

Sometimes automatic authentication is not possible, or you may want to predefine authentication credentials.

Credentials can be stored on 3 different places; in an auth.json for the project, a global auth.json or in the composer.json itself.

Authentication in auth.json per project#

In this authentication storage method, an auth.json file will be present in the same folder as the projects' composer.json file. You can either create and edit this file using the command line or manually edit or create it.

Note: Make sure the auth.json file is in .gitignore to avoid leaking credentials into your git history.

Global authentication credentials#

If you don't want to supply credentials for every project you work on, storing your credentials globally might be a better idea. These credentials are stored in a global auth.json in your Composer home directory.

Command line global credential editing#

For all authentication methods it is possible to edit them using the command line;

Manually editing global authentication credentials#

Note: It is not recommended to manually edit your authentication options as this might result in invalid json. Instead preferably use the command line.

To manually edit it, run:

composer config --global --editor [--auth]

For specific authentication implementations, see their sections;

Manually editing this file instead of using the command line may result in invalid json errors. To fix this you need to open the file in an editor and fix the error. To find the location of your global auth.json, execute:

composer config --global --list

And look for the [home] section. (It is by default ~/.composer or %APPDATA%/Composer on Windows) The folder will contain your global auth.json if it exists.

You can open this file in your favorite editor and fix the error.

Authentication in composer.json file itself#

Note: This is not recommended as these credentials are visible to anyone who has access to the composer.json, either when it is shared through a version control system like git or when an attacker gains (read) access to your production server files.

It is also possible to add credentials to a composer.json on a per-project basis in the config section or directly in the repository definition.

Authentication using the COMPOSER_AUTH environment variable#

Note: Using the command line environment variable method also has security implications. These credentials will most likely be stored in memory, and on be persisted to a file like ~/.bash_history(linux) or ConsoleHost_history.txt (PowerShell on Windows) when closing a session.

The final option to supply Composer with credentials is to use the COMPOSER_AUTH environment variable. These variables can be either passed as command line variables or set in actual environment variables. Read more about the usage of this environment variable here.

Authentication methods#

http-basic#

Command line http-basic#

composer config [--global] http-basic.example.org username password

Manual http-basic#

composer config [--global] --editor --auth
{
    "http-basic": {
        "example.org": {
            "username": "username",
            "password": "password"
        }
    }
}

Inline http-basic#

For the inline http-basic authentication method the credentials are not stored in a separate auth.json in the project or globally, but in the composer.json or global configuration in the same place where the Composer repository definition is defined.

Command line inline http-basic#

composer config [--global] repositories composer.unique-name https://username:password@repo.example.org

Manual inline http-basic#

composer config [--global] --editor
{
    "repositories": [
        {
            "type": "composer",
            "url": "https://username:password@example.org"
        }
    ]
}

Custom token authentication#

Manual custom token authentication#

composer config [--global] --editor
{
    "repositories": [
        {
            "type": "composer",
            "url": "https://example.org",
            "options":  {
              "http": {
                "header": [
                  "API-TOKEN: YOUR-API-TOKEN"
                ]
              }
            }
        }
    ]
}

gitlab-oauth#

Note: For the gitlab authentication to work on private gitlab instances, the gitlab-domains section should also contain the url.

Command line gitlab-oauth#

composer config [--global] gitlab-oauth.example.org token

Manual gitlab-oauth#

composer config [--global] --editor --auth
{
    "gitlab-oauth": {
        "example.org": "token"
    }
}

gitlab-token#

Note: For the gitlab authentication to work on private gitlab instances, the gitlab-domains section should also contain the url.

When creating a gitlab token manually, make sure it has either the read_api or api scope.

Command line gitlab-token#

composer config [--global] gitlab-token.example.org token

Manual gitlab-token#

composer config [--global] --editor --auth
{
    "gitlab-token": {
        "example.org": "token"
    }
}

github-oauth#

To create a new access token, head to your token settings section on Github and generate a new token. For public repositories when rate limited, the public_repo scope is required, for private repositories the repo:status scope is needed. Read more about it here.

Command line github-oauth#

composer config [--global] github-oauth.github.com token

Manual github-oauth#

composer config [--global] --editor --auth
{
    "github-oauth": {
        "github.com": "token"
    }
}

bitbucket-oauth#

The BitBucket driver uses OAuth to access your private repositories via the BitBucket REST APIs, and you will need to create an OAuth consumer to use the driver, please refer to Atlassian's Documentation. You will need to fill the callback url with something to satisfy BitBucket, but the address does not need to go anywhere and is not used by Composer.

Command line bitbucket-oauth#

composer config [--global] bitbucket-oauth.bitbucket.org consumer-key consumer-secret

Manual bitbucket-oauth#

composer config [--global] --editor --auth
{
    "bitbucket-oauth": {
        "bitbucket.org": {
             "consumer-key": "key",
             "consumer-secret": "secret"
        }
    }
}

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