Sun has announced that it is adopting OpenID, which provides user-centric, decentralized, URL-based digital identity. Sun is inviting participation from partners interested in combining and converging OpenID with technologies like SAML and Liberty Alliance's Identity Web Services Framework.
In order to explore the boundaries of OpenID as a trust system, Sun is offering an OpenID Provider service to its 34,000 employees. Using Sun-based OpenID identifiers at an OpenID-accepting website can convey in this simple and secure manner that the user is a Sun employee, a piece of information that can enable access to employee discounts and unlock other special services all across the web. Sun will work with partners to extend special services on this basis. The Sun OpenID Provider is built using OpenSSO, the open-source project that is providing the basis for the Sun Java System Access Manager and Sun Java Federation Manager products, as well as OpenDS, the open-source project that is providing Sun's next-generation directory services. Both of these projects now include OpenID extensions. Sun will also determine how to OpenID-enable its own websites in an appropriate manner, as well as how best to add valuable OpenID support to additional products and platforms, such as the Sun Web Developer Pack.