When a client program initiates a connection to a server, it must provide an username and password. A server authenticates a connection request by comparing the username and password it receives from a client to the authentication records in its configuration file, serverConnect.conf. The server uses the first authentication record that matches the information sent by the client.

The authentication records are reread for each attempted connection so any changes to the file will take effect immediately.

The Global Console always displays a log-on dialog box where a user must type an username and password. Other applications can prompt for an username and password or be configured to automatically send the username and password.

For example, when a Global Console connects to a Service Assurance Manager, it sends an username and password to the Service Assurance Manager. The Service Assurance Manager compares the credentials to the authentication record listed in its serverConnect.conf file. If the first matching record allows the connection, the Service Assurance Manager accepts the connection and grants the user the privileges specified by the authentication record. If the username and password do not match an authentication record, the connection is refused.