Shibboleth SP attributes character encoding

Markus Frei markus.frei at
Mon Aug 31 03:25:32 EDT 2015

Just a suggestion: did you try Apache's mod_headers 
( and its 
"edit" or "edit*" functions? Maybe this could help.


On Mon, Aug 31, 2015 at 9:15 , Robert Führicht 
<Robert.Fuehricht at> wrote:
> Hi,
> I'm looking for some pointers on this issue I'm having with character 
> encoding in
> headers and environment variables provided by Shibboleth SP.
> I got this third party app (deployed as a .war file in Tomcat 7.x and 
> sadly not changeable)
> which uses certain HTTP headers from trusted sources to manage 
> authentication and authorization.
> I set up a SP and let Apache proxy to it via AJP. Sadly, said headers 
> *must* contain
> non-ASCII characters (umlauts) for it to work.
> According to the SP's docs, the passed attributes are supposed to be 
> treated as
> Unicode. Tomcat does treat them as ISO-8859-1, and, apart from 
> recompiling it,
> there seems no way to change that. As far as I can tell, it doesn't 
> even try to use the
> request's advertised encoding. It doesn't matter if I proxy via AJP 
> or HTTP, or
> if I pass them as headers or attributes.
> If I understood correctly, the Tomcat devs claim (see 
> that the Servlet API requires the ISO encoding.
> I'm not sure how to proceed with this. Did I miss some config setting 
> somewhere
> to make this work?
> It does seem to me that either Shibboleth SP or Tomcat have to be 
> changed to support
> this, but I don't know which should "budge".
> What's your take on this?
> -Robert
> --
> To unsubscribe from this list send an email to 
> users-unsubscribe at

More information about the users mailing list