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Documentation & User Guides | FotoWare

Application registration using OAuth 2.0

Application Registration

FotoWeb only allows registered applications to be authorized using OAuth 2.0. Applications are registered by the FotoWeb administrator in the site configuration interface: Open the FotoWeb site configuration, then go to the Settings tab, expand the Services node and select Applications.

Some applications provided by FotoWare, such as FotoWeb Desktop and the FotoWeb mobile apps, may use OAuth 2.0 as well. There is no action required to register these applications.

Adding an integrated application to FotoWeb.png

When registering an application, first choose the application type:

  • For web applications with a back-end (server) component or web APIs, choose Web Application / API
  • For native desktop applications (Windows, Mac, ...) or mobile applications (Android, iOS, ...), choose Native / mobile
  • For single-page applications or applications using only the FotoWeb widgets, choose Native / mobile
  • For non-interactive applications, choose Non-interactive/script

For security reasons, we strongly recommend ALWAYS selecting the proper application type, even if it may seem that one type "works" for another actual type of application. For example, authorization for web applications is slightly easier to implement, but it is unsuitable for native applications, because a native application is a publicly available client which cannot keep the client secret secure from users reverse-engineering the binary of the application.

Web applications that are distributed as software packages to be installed "on premises" must allow the client secret to be configurable rather than hard-coded, so each installation can use its own secret without exposing it to other customers.

Furthermore, an application has the following properties:

  • client ID which uniquely identifies the client, and which is created upon application registration.
  • One or more redirection endpoint URIs, which are used by the authorization protocol and which must be controlled by the application.
  • For web applications only: A client secret, which is used for client authentication.

The client secret is shown to the administrator only once when it is generated. It cannot be retrieved later. If the client secret is lost, then a new one must be generated.

The client secret MUST NOT be exposed publicly. It must be stored securely in the back-end of the application only. Therefore, native and single-page applications cannot have a client secret and must use other mechanisms to protect the authorization process.

Redirection Endpoints

An application must control one or more redirection endpoints on which it can receive and handle HTTP(S) requests from a standard browser. Each redirection endpoint URI must be registered and be of one of the following formats:

  • A standard HTTP or HTTPS web URL
  • An HTTP loopback URL
  • A URI with a private-use scheme

Common rules for all types of URIs are:

  • MUST NOT contain a fragment part (#...)
  • MUST NOT contain a query part (?...)
  • MUST NOT be identical to another redirect URI of the same or another registered application

This type of redirection URI is typically used for web applications, but it may also be used for native applications on some mobile platforms which support claimed "HTTPS" URIs (i.e., URLs, which are automatically opened in an app rather than the default browser). Claimed "HTTPS" URIs are also the recommended approach for native application on platforms where they are supported.


The following additional rules apply for HTTP(S) web URLs:

  • MUST be absolute (i.e., contain both the scheme, https:// or http://, AND a host name)
  • MUST not have a common prefix with the FotoWeb site URL with ANY protocol.

    Example: If the site URL is, then the following redirect URIs are all invalid:
  • The host name MUST be the name of a domain that you own and control.

For security reasons, it is strongly recommended to use HTTPS redirection URLs only. The application SHOULD have a valid CA certificate. Although OAuth 2.0 provides additional measures for preventing interception of authorization codes and access tokens, HTTPS and host verification helps ensure that the endpoint URI is controlled by the application.

Private-use URI Schemes

Native applications may register private-use URI schemes to make the OS automatically pass requests using these URIs to the application. This is an alternative to claimed "HTTPS" URIs on systems where they are not supported, such as most desktop systems (Windows, Mac, ...).


where the part after the slash is an arbitrary URL path using the same syntax as regular URLs.

The scheme MUST be a reversed name of a domain that actually exists and is controlled by the owner of the app. FotoWeb does not technically enforce this rule. However, policies of some app stores may require this and allow vendors to petition apps using their domain names and remove offending apps from the app store.

For example, we could use com.fotoware.XXX for our own apps. A subdomain XXX doesn't really need to exist, because we control everything under

HTTP Loopback URLs

Native applications may listen on the loopback interface of the device they are running on. This is an alternative on platforms which do not support claimed "HTTPS" URIs or private-use URI schemes. To support both IPv4 and IPv6 interfaces, an application SHOULD always register redirection endpoint URLs for both protocols:

The port can be any port on which the application can listen. However, the ports 8800-8899 are reserved for FotoWare applications and MUST NOT be used.

Using localhost as the host name is supported but not recommended, for security reasons.

During authorization, the application MUST send the redirect_uri parameter using the correct redirection URI for the loopback interface (IPv4 or IPv6) it is listening on.

What's Next?

Next, learn how to obtain an access token in your application. The method for doing this will depend on the type of application you are building.