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william_trest
Community Participant

Change Catalog Default Login URL

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We've customized our catalog page quite a bit (in large thanks to this community.. you guys are awesome!) but we're running into an issue where our Login URL takes users to our college SSO login. (I guess this is default in Canvas). Our catalog will be used for non-domain users so we need the /login URL to redirect to _.instructure.com/login/canvas. Is it possible to customize this URL? Thanks in advance. Hope you all stay safe and healthy!

1 Solution

 @william_trest ‌,

The only customizations to the login url in Catalog are to direct your user to a page after login. "<catalog_domain>/login?target_uri=/" would direct a user to the Catalog home page instead of the dashboard after login.

Catalog leverages whatever authentication you have in place in Canvas. If you have SAML as the default login method then your catalog users are going to be redirected to SAML to login to Canvas. Once the user is in Canvas, there is an OAuth workflow to log the Canvas user into Catalog. The workaround for this is to use a Discovery Page.

With a discovery page, all of your Canvas/Catalog users will be directed to select their authentication method before getting into Canvas (whether they are going through Catalog or not). This can be a minor disruption for your users, but shouldn't be too bad. For your institution, there would be a link to your SAML config (<canvas_domain>/login/saml) and another link to your Canvas login screen (<canvas_domain>/login/canvas). SAML users would click on the SAML link and be authenticated into Canvas/Catalog, and Canvas login users click the Canvas login link and login to Canvas. If they clicked the login button via Catalog, they will the be redirected to the Catalog target_uri (default is dashboard).

Hope that helps,

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29 Replies
jsowalsk
Advocate

You would need to make a redirect from the catalog instance or the Canvas instance and this can done. If this makes sense.

Ok Thank you

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Welcome.

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So.. I thought I could figure out how to do that, but I talked to our Canvas admin and she doesn't really know either. Do you have any resources or documentation that could point us in the right direction?

I need to keep our registered (enrolled in our college) users' experience the same, but our Catalog users are not (most likely) going to be registered users. So the redirect should only be on the catalog instance.. the problem is I don't know where to modify that login URL. Is that through an API? Through the Canvas admin settings?

We are pretty new to this kind of modification so any help or direction you could offer would be very much appreciated.

In googling, It looks like others have had similar question (though not exactly the same) that were not answered either: Login redirect possible? It's possible I"m not asking the right questions though. Thanks for any help you can offer. 

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You cannot modify the URL -- and the settings are in the authentication settings in Canvas and it would need to be done through your network team.

Ok thanks I'll reach out to them. I appreciate your help

jsowalsk
Advocate

Welcome.

Jason_Ross
Community Participant

Hello Michael Trest

Did you ever get this working?  We are in the same boat, we have tried to redirect the login to another page, and it works to login to Canvas but it does not redirect us back to the catalog as the signed in user.  We are using our College course enrollment system with our SSO authentication.  Catalog will be used for extended partners who login with the direct page rather than our authentication page.

Thanks

Jason

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Hey Jason, 

No we didn't. We opened a support ticket with Instructure, but the best we could do is put a navigation link in the catalog courses back to the catalog dashboard. We are still looking for other options, but this is the best we've come up with so far. I'll update here if we find out anything new. 

 @jaclark7 ‌ have you done anything with redirects that could help with this?

Hi All,

Unfortunately, I don't think I'll be very helpful.  We don't connect our Catalog to our college SIS so there is no SSO in place.  I kind of have the opposite process, our non-credit students have to go to a college system to enroll versus enrolling on the Catalog.  I just do this by a hyperlink in the listing html.  Does this issue happen both with your main Catalog and all sub-catalogs?  

Thanks for trying to help us get to the bottom of it all. 

Yes, the login button at the top right-hand of the page has some kind of session variable or cookie or something (sorry I don't know much about these things). The link directs users to /login which redirects to ###.instructure.com/login/saml. It doesn't matter what page or subcatalog they are on. In our case, this takes them to the institution's SSO login page. Once the user is authenticated then that login link changes into the user / dashboard navigation button.

The problem is that if we change that link to go straight to /login/canvas then it just takes the authenticated user straight to Canvas. Now if the authenticated user somehow navigates back to Catalog then they are still logged in and can see their dashboard. 

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jsowalsk
Advocate

Maybe ask about this during our June call to see if anyone has any solutions?

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I'm sorry I don't know about the call you're talking about. I'll ask our Canvas admin if she knows. 

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Please check the events tab.

william_trest
Community Participant

So to add a little bit more complication to this issue. I ran into a related problem during a presentation with our institution's president (argh). A new user can enroll into a course with a new email address no problem, but if an existing user with a non-domain email address wants to enroll in a course then he/she must use the "already a user?, sign in here" button.. which takes them to the SAML login page. I tried modifying that URL but once again it only logs the user directly into Canvas and doesn't return the user to Canvas Catalog.

This might be a deal breaker because that means that existing users can't sign in and finish purchasing their course selection. We all know how important this step of the decision funnel is and I've got another huge demo on Tuesday... Gonna have to come up with some kind of work around for that meeting, but we're gonna have to find a good fix for this soon. 

Does anyone know the developer that created these unsupported modifications? GitHub - unsupported/catalog: Unsupported Catalog Tweaks I'm going to try to get in touch with him to see if he can help or has any advice.

Thanks again for all your help and suggestions.

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It looks like the person who added the files to the GitHub is on the community. 

 @jperkins  

I reached out in GitHub. I'll try here too. Thank you!

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 @william_trest ‌,

The only customizations to the login url in Catalog are to direct your user to a page after login. "<catalog_domain>/login?target_uri=/" would direct a user to the Catalog home page instead of the dashboard after login.

Catalog leverages whatever authentication you have in place in Canvas. If you have SAML as the default login method then your catalog users are going to be redirected to SAML to login to Canvas. Once the user is in Canvas, there is an OAuth workflow to log the Canvas user into Catalog. The workaround for this is to use a Discovery Page.

With a discovery page, all of your Canvas/Catalog users will be directed to select their authentication method before getting into Canvas (whether they are going through Catalog or not). This can be a minor disruption for your users, but shouldn't be too bad. For your institution, there would be a link to your SAML config (<canvas_domain>/login/saml) and another link to your Canvas login screen (<canvas_domain>/login/canvas). SAML users would click on the SAML link and be authenticated into Canvas/Catalog, and Canvas login users click the Canvas login link and login to Canvas. If they clicked the login button via Catalog, they will the be redirected to the Catalog target_uri (default is dashboard).

Hope that helps,

Thanks Jeremy, 

I was afraid you were going to say something like that. Our leadership is very hesitant making an institution-wide change unless we absolutely have to (especially given the shift to all students and faculty online right now). If there isn't any other way then I'll let them know and maybe they will reconsider or maybe we can find another store-front solution than catalog. 

I appreciate everyone's help with this. 

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william_trest
Community Participant

Is there anyway to remove "assumed answered" from this question?  We have not found a solution for this.

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I honestly dont know who created the GitHub. Maybe ask your CSM?

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Jason_Ross
Community Participant

We are still looking into this issue with login on our Catalog page.  Don't think we are ready as a new Canvas school to toss us a discovery page.  What I am looking from others on this space, is if they have a separate instance for Catalog users.  Our SAML login for our current faculty and students will be working normally.  Our rep asked us if we would be interested in separate instance this way Catalog would be pointed to that and would stay all local users.  Has anyone has this setup before and give some insight.

Thanks

Jason 

 @jsowalsk ‌ Is it Iowa that uses a separate instance for their Catalog?  I thought they presented on that last year at Instructurecon. 

zowada-a
Community Participant

We (University of Wyoming) have a separate instance for our Catalog users - our main instance uses SSO and is tied to Banner and our credit courses, while our other instance is not. We are hoping to tie in Elevate to it, in addition to manual course creation, but we don't have this set up yet.

Jason_Ross
Community Participant

We run the same setup with SSO on our Production Canvas system with Banner backend.  Love to pick your  brain on some questions as we are looking to move down a separate instance for Catalog users only.

Jason

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zowada-a
Community Participant

Jason, I sent you a message - we'd be happy to chat with you next week!

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william_trest
Community Participant

Any way to avoid an extra step in the purchase / login process would be fantastic so I'm open to a separate instance, but I'm not sure what is involved. We will also have institution people accessing content eventually so I'm not sure that will work for us unless it is easy to go between/back and forth between instances?

I'm glad to see this is not just an issue for us. Perhaps this can be addressed by the catalog team? Is this product still being actively developed?

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That's understandable.  We have a similar issue.  Since our Catalog and Canvas instance are not tied to any SIS, I'm trying to come up with a way to pass information from the Catalog to the college system (ACEware in this case).  I'm thinking an API may be able to handle the transfer of the information, but I'm not super versed in creating and running APIs, unfortunately.

In terms of passing information between the two instances, I'm not sure how that would work.  It seems like it should be simple, but I'm guessing it's not.  Hopefully someone who actually has two separate instances is able to add input.    

I'm having a really hard time getting anyone to answer a question about Catalog on a support case.  They have passed me off to different teams and closed the ticket twice now, all without answering my questions.  It seems like there is very little manpower assigned to the Catalog.