How to use Spring Boot Security in web application – Part VIII

In this post, we will show how to use Spring Boot Security to login, authorization based on user role, logout and error handling.

We will be discussing following use case

  1. A user access a home page for application.
  2. If user is authenticated, he will be redirected to page
  3. If user is not authenticated, he will be challenged to login ( redirected to login page)
  4. User enters credentials
  5. If correct credentials, a session is created and user is verified for role
  6. If incorrect credentials, show an error message
  7. If user is of role USER, he is redirected to user profile page. He can only edit or save his information.
  8. If user is of role ADMIN, he is redirected to list of users page.
  9. If user clicks on logout, session is deleted and user is redirected to login page.
  10. If user (of any role) tries to login after logout, user should be redirected to appropriate page
  11. If user is neither USER nor ADMIN, he is redirected to error page
  12. Handling of CSRF token

To completely understand this post, make sure you have gone through my other posts on Spring Boot series.

  1. Spring Boot REST CRUD API
  2. Swagger Documentation
  3. User Interface using AngularJS


Database changes

Since this post involves authorization for users, we have to do some database changes. We will add couple of tables and respective model classes in our REST api modification.

  • Table role
  • Table user_role

create table role (id int(11) auto_increment primary key not null, role varchar(255) )

create table user_role (user_id int(11) primary key not null, role_id int(11) primary key not null))

user_role table helps to maintain many-to-many relationship between user and role table. We will have only two roles for demo purposes USER and ADMIN.

Another change we have done in table user is that we have added field called password_hash to store password set by user/administrator for user to login. We will be storing a hash password value of the original password that user will set.


Since we will be using Spring-security for authentication and authorization purposes, we will add the dependency for spring security as follows:

<dependency>    <groupId>org.springframework.boot</groupId>    <artifactId>spring-boot-starter-security</artifactId> </dependency> 

Controllers and Web Layer

Other than those changes mentioned about, we will demonstrate this post in top-down fashion rather than bottom-up fashion.

So for web layer, we will define a new controller LoginController and modify our existing MainController.

package com.betterjavacode.benefits.controller;

import org.apache.logging.log4j.LogManager;
import org.apache.logging.log4j.Logger;
import org.springframework.beans.factory.annotation.Autowired;
import org.springframework.stereotype.Controller;
import org.springframework.ui.Model;
import org.springframework.web.bind.annotation.RequestMapping;
import org.springframework.web.bind.annotation.RequestMethod;

import com.betterjavacode.benefits.entities.User;
import com.betterjavacode.benefits.interfaces.UserManager;

* @author Yogesh Mali
public class LoginController {

public static final Logger LOGGER = LogManager.getLogger(LoginController.class);

UserManager userManager;

* @param model
* @return
@RequestMapping(value = "/user", method = RequestMethod.GET)
public String userpage(Model model) {" Enter >> userpage() ");
Authentication auth = SecurityContextHolder.getContext()
String name = auth.getName();
User user = userManager.findUserByEmail(name);
model.addAttribute("name", user.getFirstname());
model.addAttribute("userid", user.getId());" Exit << userpage() ");
return "user";

* @return
@RequestMapping(value = { "/login" })
public String login() {
return "login";

* @return
@RequestMapping(value = "/403", method = RequestMethod.GET)
public String Error403() {
return "403";

As shown in this controller, we have defined a user page, a login page and an error page (403). A user with role of either USER or ADMIN or both can access a user page which shows that logged in user’s profile.

Every user irrespective of roles, will be redirected to login page for authentication. If there are any errors during authentication or authorization, user will be redirected to access denied page (403).

Source code for login page is as below:

<!DOCTYPE html><!DOCTYPE html><html xmlns="" xmlns:th="">
<head> <title>Benefits Application</title>
	<link rel="stylesheet" href="" /> 	<link rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" th:href="@{/css/login.css}" />  <script src=""></script>  <script src=""></script></head>
<div class="container"> <form th:action="@{/login}" method="POST" class="form-signin">
<h3 class="form-signin-heading" th:text="Welcome"></h3>
<input type="text" id="email" name="username"  th:placeholder="Email" class="form-control" style="width:350px"/>
<input type="password"  th:placeholder="Password" id="password" name="password" class="form-control" style="width:350px"/>
<div align="center" th:if="${param.error}">
<p style="font-size: 20; color: #FF1C19;">Email or Password invalid, please verify</p>

<button class="btn btn-lg btn-primary btn-block" name="Submit" value="Login" type="Submit" th:text="Login" style="width:350px"></button> </form></div>

This login page shows a simple form to input username (email) and password and process that authentication using spring-security database authentication method.

@RequestMapping(value = "/home", method = RequestMethod.GET)
public String homepage(Model model) {" Enter &gt;&gt; homepage() ");
Authentication auth = SecurityContextHolder.getContext()
String name = auth.getName();
User user = userManager.findUserByEmail(name);
model.addAttribute("name", user.getFirstname());" Exit &lt;&lt; homepage() ");
return "index";

Changes in MainController are about authenticated user and passing that user’s first name to model to display in html page. UserManager in service layer has been enhanced to return an user based on username (which is email) . We have also added email to be unique as a constraint in database.

User page for an user with role USER is nothing but a user profile information which he can edit and update any time.

<html ng-app="benefitApp"><html ng-app="benefitApp"><head><meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=ISO-8859-1" />
<title>Benefit Application</title><script>document.write('<base href="' + document.location + '" />');</script>	<link rel="stylesheet" href="/css/bootstrap.css" /><script src=""></script><script src=""></script><script src=""></script><script type="text/javascript" src="./js/app.js"></script></head><body ng-controller="UserCtrl">Hello
<p th:text="${name}"></p>

<ul class="menu">
	<li><a th:href="@{'userProfile/' + ${userid}}">Profile</a></li>
<div ng-view="ng-view"></div>
<div class="input-group">
<div class="controls">    <a ng-click="logout()" class="btn btn-small">Logout</a></div>


Now we have the application ready with all the required backend details for adding authentication part. Remember we are using spring-security for authentication and authorization of an application.

package com.betterjavacode.benefits;

import javax.sql.DataSource;

import org.apache.logging.log4j.LogManager;
import org.apache.logging.log4j.Logger;
import org.springframework.beans.factory.annotation.Autowired;
import org.springframework.beans.factory.annotation.Value;
import org.springframework.context.annotation.ComponentScan;
import org.springframework.context.annotation.Configuration;
import org.springframework.core.annotation.Order;

public class SecurityConfig extends WebSecurityConfigurerAdapter {

    public static final Logger LOGGER = LogManager.getLogger(SecurityConfig.class);

    private SimpleAuthenticationSuccessHandler loginSuccess;

    private LogoutSuccess logoutSuccess;

    private BCryptPasswordEncoder bCryptPasswordEncoder;

    private DataSource dataSource;

    private String usersQuery;

    private String rolesQuery;

    protected void configureGlobal(AuthenticationManagerBuilder auth) throws &amp;nbsp; &amp;nbsp; &amp;nbsp; &amp;nbsp;Exception {" Enter &gt;&gt; configureGlobal() ");
       .usersByUsernameQuery("select email,password_hash,enabled from user where email=?")
       .authoritiesByUsernameQuery("select,r.role from user u inner join user_role ur on( inner join role r on( where")
       .passwordEncoder(bCryptPasswordEncoder);" Exit &lt;&lt; configureGlobal() ");

   * Handle Login - Authentication and Redirection
   protected void configure(HttpSecurity http) throws Exception {
                .hasAnyAuthority("USER", "ADMIN")


     * Exclude resources from user-access
     public void configure(WebSecurity web) throws Exception {
        .antMatchers("/resources/**", "/static/**", "/css/**", "/js/**", "/images/**");

What’s happening in this code?

  • When a user with role ADMIN or USER calls either /home or /user pages respectively, the user will be challenged to login.
  • Once the user inputs credentials, they are validated against JDBC database authentication mechanism provided by spring-security.
  • If user of role USER tries to access ADMIN home page, user will be redirected to 403 page. Redirection strategy is handled by an authentication success handler.
  • If user clicks LOGOUT button on the page he is on, he will be logged out of application and redirected back to login page. All the cookies will be deleted. Redirection will be handled by logout success handler.


Changes in AngularJS User Interface Controller

As shown in user.html page, once the user with role USER is logged in, he sees url for his profile information. If user clicks this url, user sees his or her profile information. This page has a controller called UserCtrl which basically handles the logout on this initial page. User Profile is shown on userprofile.html page which has singleusercontroller. This angular js controller handles updating user profile information or logout. Rest of the code will be updated in github repository for self-explanation.

Handling CSRF Token

There are two ways Cross-Site Request Forgery token can be handled in Spring application. First way is by disabling this token generation. This is not a recommended approach as this put your application to possible CSRF security attacks for hackers. If you are just doing this for demo purposes, you can disable this in by calling http.csrf().disable().

As spring points out, CSRF Protection should be used for any request that could be processed by a browser by normal users.

We will be using spring security to handle CSRF token on server side rather than on client side.  So every request that will come to server will be intercepted to add a CSRF token and then verified. Angular JS verifies the cookie for CSRF token before a user can post any request.

Add a CSRF Filter Class

We will add a filter that will handle setting of CSRF token in a cookie. Angular JS expects a cookie name to be as XSRF-TOKEN. This class will look like below:

public class CSRFHeaderFilter extends OncePerRequestFilter {

  protected void doFilterInternal(HttpServletRequest request, HttpServletResponse response, FilterChain filterChain) throws ServletException, IOException {
      CsrfToken csrf = (CsrfToken) request.getAttribute(CsrfToken.class.getName());
      if (csrf != null) {
      Cookie cookie = WebUtils.getCookie(request, "XSRF-TOKEN");
      String token = csrf.getToken();
      if (cookie == null || token != null && !token.equals(cookie.getValue())) {
        cookie = new Cookie("XSRF-TOKEN", token);
     filterChain.doFilter(request, response);



Now we will enable csrf token in SecurityConfig as shown below

.addFilterAfter(new CSRFHeaderFilter(), CsrfFilter.class);

What is csrfTokenRepository?

We tell spring-security to expect CSRF token in the format that Angular wants to send it back , a header called X-XSRF-TOKEN instead of default X-CSRF-TOKEN. With these changes, we don’t have to do anything on client side.

private CsrfTokenRepository csrfTokenRepository() {
HttpSessionCsrfTokenRepository repository = new HttpSessionCsrfTokenRepository();
return repository;


In this post, we showed how to use spring security for authentication and authorization. Now we will show how to run the application. Once the application is built and run from eclipse, access the page https://localhost:8443/home , we will see below screen:

LoginScreenIt will be the same screen if you access https://localhost:8443/user. Now if we enter credentials of an admin user, we will see below screen:


User screen will be as below:



If you click logout, it will log the user out and show login screen again. In this way, we showed how we can use spring security for authentication and authorization. Code for this is available at Github repository.



Following articles were referred while preparing this demo:

  1. Spring Boot Security
  2. Login Page Angular JS and Spring Security

One thought on “How to use Spring Boot Security in web application – Part VIII

  1. Pingback: How to deploy Spring Boot Application on docker – Part IX | Code Complete

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