Direct logins

One of the most common uses for Clipperz cards is to securely store the details of online accounts (URLs, usernames, passwords, PINs, …)

Clipperz is, in fact, the perfect place to save that overwhelming amount of data used to access all kind of web services: your mobile phone bills, the username you were issued by an airline’s website or the credentials for the new social network you just joined,

Wouldn’t it be convenient if you could not only retrieve this information from Clipperz, but also directly sign-in to your web services without typing any username and password? This is exactly what direct logins are all about.

What is a direct login?

A “direct login” is just a link in your Clipperz interface that allows you to sign-in to a password protected web site by simply clicking on it.

How do I create a “direct login” for a specific online service?

You just need to launch the Clipperz bookmarklet from the page where you usually enter the credentials to access that service. The bookmarklet will generate a replica of the login form and copy it to the clipboard. Then you can use this data to create a “direct login” for that specific online service right from the card that store its access credentials. It’s a quite straightforward process.

Insert screenshot of the direct login tab of a card

How do I use a “direct login”?

Nothing could be less complicated: simply click on the desired “direct login” link in the “direct login” column of the main pane of the Clipperz interface or from within the detail view of a single card.

Insert screenshot of the "direct login" column

How secure are “direct logins”?

They are as secure as the whole Clipperz application since they were designed using the same security architecture and adopting the same “learn nothing” philosophy. This means that Clipperz does not know anything about your login data and your usage patterns.

How does a “direct login” work?

For those interested, here is a more technical explanation of what is going on under the hood when you create and use “direct logins”.

The Clipperz bookmarklet is a smart little Javascript program capable of analyzing and extracting the structure of a login form encoded using the JSON format. When you create a “direct login”, you move the configuration collected by the bookmarklet to the card containing the credentials for that web site.

Then, clicking on a “direct login” link triggers several actions:

  • a new empty browser window (or tab) opens;
  • a copy of the original login form is created on the new window using the data previously collected by the bookmarklet;
  • the new login form fields are filled with the corresponding values stored in the card;
  • the form is automatically submitted.

The above actions are mostly invisible to you. The only noticeable effect is that in a few seconds you are logged in to the desired web site in a new browser window.

Please note: login credentials are never transmitted to Clipperz! All actions involved by creating and using “direct logins” are performed locally in your browser.

What to do when a “direct login” does not work?

There is a (growing) set of online services with login forms that are not compatible with Clipperz “direct logins”. The Clipperz bookmarklet is capable of understanding a wide range of login forms, but in certain cases it will fail. There are basically two cases:

  1. The bookmarklet is unable to create the login form “replica”.
    It mostly happens with websites that use Flash or Java for authentication. Unless you manage to find a more friendly sign-in page for that web site, you are out of luck.

  2. The bookmarklet does produce a “replica”, but the direct login fails.
    Unfortunately more and more sites are adding “security features” (checking for cookie or sessions info) that make configuring a direct login harder, when not completely impossible.
    Sometimes making small changes to the code generated by the bookmarklet could lead to good results. Giulio wrote a simple tutorial for when a direct login does not work. If you need help send us an email or post a message on the Clipperz forum.