I've recently decided to add Comment as OpenID functionality to my wordpress blog. The reasons to do that is that I myself have today created an OpenID account. Already million of people have OpenID account without even knowing. Most major search engines and social websites like Google, Yahoo, Live Journal, Hyves, Blogger, Flicker, MySpace automatically creates an OpenID account for newly registered users.
It is up to the user to check with each of the aforementioned providers what is the URL of their OpenID account.
Even though OpenID popularity is steadly rising, I'm sure there are still plenty of users who did not heard, used or noticed OpenID yet.
So What the heck is OpenID?
For all those who still haven't heard about it, OpenID is a universal web site login system With just one "unified" OpenID account the user can login to multiple websites with no need to create multiple accounts across each and every different website on the internet.
The only requirement for the user to be able to use OpenID is that the website in question to have (support) for OpenID credential and the user to have existing OpenID account.
Therefore using one single OpenID you can sign in as a certain user to multiple websites on the internet with no need for annoying registration process to each and every new website you encounter. Another benefit OpenID gives to the user is that you don't have to memorize or keep notes of a tens or thousands of different login accounts across the many different websites on the net.
Using OpenID also saves the user from troubles with forgotten password or username as just one OpenID login is used to login you everywhere.
For WordPress blogging platform the Russian Igor Korolev, has written a wordpress plugin – comments-to-wordpress . This plugin adds support for OpenID authentication in WordPress comments.
Here is how to OpenID to WordPress:
1. Download the comments-with-wordpress plugin and unzipAs of writting of this article latest comments-to-wordpress plugin is ver. 1.4.
Download the plugin to blog path directory lets say, /var/www/blog/wp-content/plugins/ and unzip:
# cd /var/www/blog/wp-content/plugins
# wget http://downloads.wordpress.org/plugin/comments-with-openid.zip
# unzip comments-with-openid.zip
I've also done a mirror for download of comments-with-openid 1.4 here
2. Enable Comments with OpenID wp plugin
Next the plugin has to be Enabled, just like any other wordpress plugin via admin menus:
Plugins -> Inactive -> Comments with OpenID (enable)
Once the plugin is enaabled it is necessery to add some code with a text editor in file /var/www/blog/wp-content/themes/default/comments.php
Small noet to make here: If you're not using the default WordPress theme (like I do), you will have to edit the /themes/your-theme-name/comments.php instead.
Inside the file look for the form input fields:
<p> <input type="text" name="author" ....
<p> <input type="text" name="email" id="email" ....
<p> <input type="text" name="url" id="url" ....
Before the html tags code:
Paste the following code:
<?php comments_with_openid(); ?>
Save the comments.php file and you Identification for new comments with OpenID will appear in your wordpress Comments form.
The OpenID plugin will add a number of service OpenIDs to choose between like you can see in my blog's plugin section or the screenshot below:
The URL https://www.google.com/accounts/o8/id is just a sample and showed because I clicked on the Google icon. If you have a Google profile you can check the exact ID and use it as URL there. Simply if your browser is logged in Gmail and you have Google profile. OpenID should work. As you can see the plugin supports a number of services which already support OpenID auth, the list of services can be easily extended by adding minor changes in …/plugins/comments-with-openid/comments-with-openid.php
There is also another wordpress plugin with the openid name – http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/openid/
Downloading and enabling the other openid plugin also adds support for OpenID login in your http://your-url.com/wp-admin/ login page.
Installing the OpenID plugin is needed especially if you're a blogger blogging on 5 or 10 different topic oriented blogs, once downloading and installing the OpenID plugin will allow you to login across the blog ring without loosing time or bothering to remember different passwords across all the blogs. Here is a screenshot of the /wp-admin wordpress login page with the OpenID wp plugin enabled:
As of time of writting according to http://openid.net/get-an-openid/what-is-openid/'s website there are over 50000 major websites on the net already accepting OpenID login.
Of course as every technlogy OpenID is not perfect and along with its convenience in some cases it could impose security hole. OpenID opponents claim under some circumstances OpenID is prone to forgery, XSS (cross site scripting) and XSFR attacks. Everyone who is about to use OpenID should be also aware of the great security risk it impose if one OpenID account gets stolen through sniffing, this could mean multiple websites can be accesses with the one single OpenID by the malicious user and a lot of confidential data owned by the user can be revealed or deleted …
With this said I think OpenID is not a recommended login technology for Windows users, as windows is famous for being vulnerable to so many Viruses and Spyware/Malware etc..
With non-free software OSes like MS Windows, the user never cannot for sure if the system is infected, hence using OpenID to transfer credentials over the internet or store an OpenID SSL/(TLS) certificate to identify in websites is TOO DANGEROUS!
Hope this article was helpful. Cya
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