Blackboard Transact, SSO and use of attribute friendly-name

Rob Gorrell rwgorrel at
Tue May 26 14:38:38 EDT 2015

Not to rehash an old thread, but I feel the need to join the misery...
looks as though Blackboard Transact still hasn't listened and I find myself
where you must have been over a year ago now. And unfortunately, we have
already purchased the product and I was brought in to integrate with shibb
only to stumble on to their still-dependency on the incorrect use of
friendly-name. I'll be raising to our contacts so in the hopes of having
more voices heard, but if I had to guess, its likely to go nowhere before
we implement as that appears to be the trend.

If you are looking at Blackboard Transact as a payment gateway, please be
aware of their pseudo-shibb support before you purchase!


On Thu, Mar 13, 2014 at 2:37 PM, Schwoerer, Bradley J <schwoerb at>

> Thank you to Scott, Joel, and Mahmudul.
> When on the conference call with Blackboard, I will push for an
> ‘enhancement/bug’ fix that will ask them to remove the use of
> friendly-name.  I am sure it won’t go anywhere before we implement, but it
> is worth asking in the 'before you buy' promises from a vendor.
> -Bradley
> From: Mahmudul Hasan <cs.mahmud at<mailto:cs.mahmud at>>
> Reply-To: Users Shib <users at<mailto:users at>>
> Date: Thursday, March 13, 2014 at 11:11 AM
> To: Users Shib <users at<mailto:users at>>
> Subject: Re: Blackboard Transact, SSO and use of attribute friendly-name
> We have also implemented Shibboleth with Blackboard Transact in University
> of Lethbridge.
> Our configuration is very similar to what Joel Goguen posted above.
> - Mahmudul Hasan
> On Thu, Mar 13, 2014 at 11:07 AM, Cantor, Scott <cantor.2 at<mailto:
> cantor.2 at>> wrote:
> On 3/13/14, 12:50 PM, "Schwoerer, Bradley J" <schwoerb at<mailto:
> schwoerb at>> wrote:
> >I was wondering how many people have integrated with Blackboard Transact.
> > It seems straight forward, but a bit odd if I am understanding their
> >documentation.   According to their documentation they are making use of
> >the SAML2 attribute friendly-name.  For people that have implemented this
> >product, is that truly the case.  For others, is that something that
> >other apps are doing?  To me it seems wrong, but wanted to get others
> >perspective.
> You don't need to wonder, it's explicitly outlawed in the standard.
> FriendlyName is non-normative and is for debugging or UI reasons, etc.
> So yes, it's wrong.
> -- Scott
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Robert W. Gorrell
Systems Architect, Identity and Access Management
University of NC at Greensboro
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