Version: v0.4

Introduction

ORY Kratos is an API-first Identity and User Management system that is built according to cloud architecture best practices. It implements core use cases that almost every software application needs to deal with:

  • Self-service Login and Registration: Allow end-users to create and sign into accounts (we call them identities) using Username / Email and password combinations, Social Sign In ("Sign in with Google, GitHub"), Passwordless flows, and others.
  • Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA/2FA): Support protocols such as TOTP (RFC 6238 and IETF RFC 4226 - better known as Google Authenticator)
  • Account Verification: Verify that an E-Mail address, phone number, or physical address actually belong to that identity.
  • Account Recovery: Recover access using "Forgot Password" flows, Security Codes (in case of MFA device loss), etc.
  • Profile and Account Management: Update passwords, personal details, email addresses, linked social profiles using secure flows.
  • Admin APIs: Import, update, delete identities.

Identity is a hard problem and ORY Kratos solves it in a unique way. We value security, flexibility, and integration with cloud technology (such as Kubernetes) most:

  • ORY Kratos does not ship an HTML Rendering Engine. You can build your own UI (or use our example UIs) in the language and framework you feel most comfortable with.
  • The workflow engine allows you to fully customize your use experience. Whether your users need to activate their account after registration, or have a multi-step (progressive) registration - it's all possible!
  • One Identity Data Model does not fit all - you may have customers that need a billing address, internal support staff that is assigned to a cost center, and that smart fridge on floor 4. You can express the different data models using JSON Schema and make the system work for you - not the other way around.

To learn more about what's different and how ORY Kratos compares to other open source solutions, head over to Concepts and Comparison.

ORY Kratos isn't just about features; it stands out because it runs on any operating system (Linux, macOS, Windows) and on most processors (i386, amd64, arm, etc.). The compiled binary has no system or library or file dependencies and can be run as a single, static binary on top of, for example, a raw Linux kernel. The binary and Docker image are each less than 20MB in size.

ORY Kratos scales horizontally without effort. The only external dependency is an RDBMS - we currently support SQLite, PostgreSQL, MySQL, CockroachDB. You will not need memcached, etcd, or any other system to scale ORY Kratos.

We believe in strong separation of concerns, which is a guiding principle in the design of each ORY project. As such, we build software that solves specific problems very well and offloads adjacent issues (such as a user interface) to other applications.

Last updated on by aeneasr