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KB-4255: How to use the "Exception Groups" feature in the "Require smart card login" GP

Mac & PC Management Service ,  

12 April,16 at 11:22 AM

Applies to: Centrify DirectControl version 5.2.0 and higher for Mac OS X 10.7 and higher


In Centrify User Suite 2014.1, the "Require smart card login" group policy had new functionality added to allow for "Exception groups"

What is this for and how is it used?


This setting allows for members of specified AD groups to be exempt from the requirement to log into the Mac with a smart card.
If there are no groups specified in this box; all AD users are required to login with a smart card.

One example use-case is if a user accidentally forgets their smart card, their AD account can be placed into a special AD group that allows them access into the Mac with their username and password instead. At the end of the day, the account can be removed from the group and the user will need to login with their smart card again.
Usage and Notes: 
  • When a user is placed in one of the specified AD groups, the "Require Smartcard for interactive login" checkbox in their ADUC account properties will also need to be disabled, otherwise the login will still be blocked by AD itself:
      User-added image

        • When a user switches from smart card login to username & password login, they may see a Keychain prompt at the next login. This is because the Keychain was previously locked using the smart card PIN, and now they're logging in with a different type of credential. 

          If the username login is only temporary, the user can choose "Continue Log In" and enter their smart card PIN to unlock the Keychain.

          If they choose to "Update the Keychain", then they will be prompted again after the user is switched back to smart card authentication.

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