Password validation

Chong-ho (Alex) Yu, Ph.D., MCSE, CNE


A simple question: How can I validate users' password?


The question is simple, but the answers are complex. There are at least three methods, depending on what you want to do.

Method 1:

If you want to assign different levels of access rights to different users, the best way is to use Web Security. The drawback is that you have to enter record one by one. The faster way is to type each user record in a text file, and then import it into the Web Security database.

Method 2:

If the number of users is small and only a password, rather than a pair of user ID amd password, is used for validation, the quickest way is to enter all passwords in the validation criterion of the field. Needless to say, when the number of users is big, this process becomes very tedious.

Method 3:

The last method, in my view, is the best. First, it is less labor intensive. Second, it is so flexible that you can use either both ID and pasword, or the password alone for validation. In this method, relational databases are used. The database designer should create a separate database containing the user information such as ID and password (In this example, the user info database is named "password"). Again, you can type each user record into the database one or one, or import it from a text file. Next, the content database is linked to the user info database by a key, which can be either the ID or the password.

Then, in the ID or/and password field, the validation criterion is set to refer to the ID or/and password field in the linked database. When the user enters an ID or/and a password, the content database looks up the user info database to check whether there is a match. If both ID and password are required for access, the value in both fields must be correct. For example, when the password for user1 is "abc" and the password for user2 is "123," I cannot login the database by entering "user1" as ID and "123" as password.


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