For our next geekSpeak we'll address your questions on SharePoint customization, specifically around the area of authentication providers. Our guest will be Ron Rohlfs from InterKnowlogy.

Join us on Wednesday, August 15 at noon Pacific time (3 PM Eastern) and bring your questions for Ron! Register here.

As an added treat, I'll be co-hosting this geekSpeak with my colleague G. Andrew Duthie, since Lynn has a speaking engagement and can't make it. So even if you can't think of any Sharepoint questions, at least come to harass Andrew! :)

Here's some background on what Ron will be covering:

It is not uncommon for a business to deliver web based content to multiple groups of end users. For example, a business may wish to deliver content to both internal employees on its intranet, and external users such as clients or vendors on an extranet or a publicly accessible Internet site. In these cases, it is often desirable to use multiple means for authentication. Many businesses authenticate its internal employees against Active Directory. However, it may not be desirable to add extranet users to Active Directory. Extranet users, such as clients or vendors, tend to turn over more rapidly than employees, requiring continuous updating. Furthermore, exposing Active Directory over a publicly accessible site may be associated with an unacceptable level of security risk.

A solution for this scenario using Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 is presented. A single Web Application is made available to two distinct sets of users. One set of users is authenticated using Windows Authentication in a manner similar to that used for internal employees authenticating against Active Directory. The other set of users is authenticated using Forms authentication against the ASP.NET 2.0 Membership provider. The session further discusses the use of other custom authentication providers.