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Querying Grouper database to produce attributes for Shibboleth

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  • Subject: Querying Grouper database to produce attributes for Shibboleth
  • Date: Thu, 13 Aug 2009 05:31:18 -0400 (EDT)

Hi All,

We are looking for a bit of advice or experiences when it comes to querying
the grouper database to produce attributes for Shibboleth or other purposes.

Our Shibboleth is currently configured to query the grouper database to
retrieve all group’s that a logged in user is a member of. We have found
recently that the performance of this has become a bit temperamental, and at
times Shibboleth has not been able to retrieve groups from grouper with the
query apparently timing out. We use a MySQL for our grouper database and we
use the following query to retrieve the groups from the database;

SELECT DISTINCT ga.value AS grouper_groups
FROM grouper_attributes AS ga, grouper_members gm, grouper_memberships AS gms
WHERE ga.value LIKE '%:%'
AND ga.value NOT LIKE '% %'
AND ga.group_id = gms.owner_id
AND gms.member_id =
AND gm.subject_id = concat('${campusid.get(0)}',''

With the installation of Grouper 1.4.2 we attempted to use the
grouper_membership view to retrieve peoples groups, however we found running
a simple query on this view took double the time to execute as the one we
have been using.

So we are wondering if anyone has any advice on the best way to get data out
of the grouper database to be used in situations such as the above? If this
is not the best route to go down we are also considering looking into using
the LDAP connector as an alternative.


Richard James
Newcastle University

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