Fork me on GitHub

This page in other versions: Latest (8.9) | 8.8 | 8.7 | 7.8 | 6.21 | Development

This document in other formats: PDF | ePub | Tarball


Enabling Kerberos Authentication

Prerequisite: Kerberos understanding and setup


To configure Kerberos authentication, you must setup your Kerberos Server and obtain a ticket on the client using kinit.

Note: Active Directory users with Kerberos support do not require kinit.

To enable Kerberos authentication for pgAdmin, you must configure the Kerberos settings in or (see the documentation) on the system where pgAdmin is installed in Server mode. You can copy these settings from file and modify the values for the following parameters.




The default value for this parameter is internal. To enable Kerberos authentication, you must include kerberos in the list of values for this parameter. you can modify the value as follows:

  • [‘kerberos’]: pgAdmin will use only Kerberos authentication.

  • [‘kerberos’, ‘internal’]: pgAdmin will first try to authenticate the user through kerberos. If that authentication fails, then it will return back to the login page where you need to provide internal pgAdmin user credentials for authentication.


Set the value to True if you want to automatically create a pgAdmin user corresponding to a successfully authenticated Kerberos user. Please note that password is not stored in the pgAdmin database.


Specify the name of pgAdmin webserver hostname. Please note that if it is not set, it will take the value of default_server parameter.

Keytab file for HTTP Service

  • Generate the Keytab file for the HTTP service principal HTTP/<host-name>@realm, and copy it to the pgAdmin webserver machine. Ensure that the operating system user owning the pgAdmin webserver is the owner of this file and should be accessible by that user.

  • Please note that either you should set default_keytab_name parameter in krb5.conf file or the environment variable KRB5_KTNAME. If not set then explicitly set KRB_KTNAME to the location of your Keytab file in the or file.

Apache HTTPD Configuration

If the pgAdmin server is under the Apache Server, then you need to add the following parameters in Directory directive of Apache HTTPD Configuration:

  • WSGIScriptReloading On

  • WSGIPassAuthorization On

Browser settings to configure Kerberos Authentication

You need to configure the browser settings on the client machine to use Kerberos authentication via SPNEGO.

  • For Mozilla Firefox

    • Open the low level Firefox configuration page by entering about:config in the address bar.

    • In the Search text box, enter: network.negotiate-auth.trusted-uris

    • Double-click the network.negotiate-auth.trusted-uris preference and enter the hostname or the domain of the web server that is protected by Kerberos HTTP SPNEGO. Separate multiple domains and hostnames with a comma.

    • Click OK.

  • For Google Chrome

    • On Windows:

      • Open the Control Panel to access the Internet Options dialog.

      • Select the Security tab.

      • Select the Local Intranet zone and click the Sites button.

      • Make sure that the first two options, Include all local (intranet) sites not listed in other zones and Include all sites that bypass the proxy server are checked.

      • Click Advanced and add the names of the domains that are protected by Kerberos HTTP SPNEGO, one at a time, to the list of websites. For example, Click Close.

      • Click OK to save your configuration changes.

    • On Linux or macOS:

      • Add the –auth-server-whitelist parameter to the google-chrome command. For example, to run Chrome from a Linux prompt, run the google-chrome command as follows:

      google-chrome --auth-server-whitelist = "hostname/domain"

PostgreSQL Server settings to configure Kerberos Authentication

  • To connect the PostgreSQL server with Kerberos authentication, GSSAPI support has to be enabled when PostgreSQL is built and the necessary configuration has to be in place.

  • In pgAdmin you need to enable Kerberos authentication for the PostgreSQL server by setting “Kerberos authentication” flag to True in the Server dialog. Once it is enabled, pgAdmin will not prompt for a password and will try to connect to the PostgreSQL server using Kerberos.

  • Note that, you have to login into pgAdmin with Kerberos authentication to then connect to PostgreSQL using Kerberos.

Master Password

In the multi user mode, pgAdmin uses user’s login password to encrypt/decrypt the PostgreSQL server password. In the Kerberos authentication, the pgAdmin user does not have the password, so we need an encryption key to store the PostgreSQL server password for the servers which are not configured to use the Kerberos authentication. To accomplish this, set the configuration parameter MASTER_PASSWORD to True, so upon setting the master password, it will be used as an encryption key while storing the password. If it is False, the server password can not be stored.