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2 months 3 hours ago
Group Manager

Project Moonshot is a Janet-led initiative, in partnership with the GÉANT project and others, to develop a single unifying technology for extending the benefits of federated identity to a broad range of non-Web services, including Cloud infrastructures, High Performance Computing & Grid infrastructures and other commonly deployed services including mail, file store, remote access and instant messaging.

The goal of the technology is to enable the management of access to a broad range of services and applications, using a single technology and infrastructure. This is expected to significantly improve the delivery of these services by providing users with a common single sign-on, for both internal and external services. Service providers will be able to more easily offer their services to users from other organisations using a single common authentication mechanism. This will enhance the user’s experience, and reduce costs for those organisations supporting users, and delivering services to them.

This group is for community of Moonshot users, whether you're new to the technology, you're currently evaluating and getting to grips with it, or you've deployed it. For the list of guidance available about Moonshot within this group, see the Start Here wiki page.

Jisc Assent, the production service underpinned by the Moonshot technology, went live on 25th March 2015. For information on, or to join the Jisc Assent service, please visit


Those of you who have been following Moonshot for a while will be aware that from the outset we have been keen to get the technology adopted as a standard. Thanks to the hard work of the Application Bridging for Federated Access Beyond web (ABFAB) Working Group of the IETF, December saw an important milestone with the publication of three Moonshot-related RFC documents:

RFC 7055

Title: A GSS-API Mechanism for the Extensible Authentication Protocol

Author: Author: S. Hartman, Ed., J. Howlett


Over the summer we have been busy procuring the development and support services required to take Moonshot forwards to a Service Pilot.

Following an OJEU procurement, I am pleased to announce that last month Painless Security was awarded a contract to provide Janet with a Moonshot code development, maintenance and support service for 2 years with an option to extend for a further 2 years.


Last night Sam Hartman from Painless Security published a code update to ensure Moonshot is in line with the the latest IETF specs.

In particular:


As we ramp up towards the Janet Pilot we are aiming to provide incremental DVD releases. The latest release is  Moonshot Pilot Release 1 DVD which can be found at:

And the corresponding .source directory.

This image includes a few bug fixes. The most notable is that the installer is fixed and you can now just boot into the image and install to a running system.


In issue 21 of Janet News, published in June 2013, Dr Rhys Smith describes the technologies used in Moonshot and outlines the steps that take place when an application uses Moonshot for authentication.


Since 2010, Janet, working with partners in GÉANT, has been developing Moonshot Technology to provide authentication to non-web services and systems. Moonshot Technology is now at a level where it is being tested in multiple organisations across many different countries and there is a desire to formally develop and pilot a pan-European service within eduGAIN in GN3plus.

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