OMERO sessions

OMERO sessions simplifies the handling of login sessions for OMERO.blitz.

Blitz session creation and destruction

In short:

  • Sessions are a replacement for the standard JavaEE security infrastructure.

  • Sessions unify the Blitz and RMI session handling, making working with Java RMI more like Blitz (since the JavaEE interaction is essentially “conversationless”).

  • Sessions provide the ability (especially in Blitz) to quit a session and rejoin it later as long as it has not timed out, possibly useful for moving from one machine to another.

  • Sessions provide the ability to share the same space. Two users/clients attached to the same session would experience the same life-cycle.

  • Sessions provide a scratch space to which any data can be written for and by job/script executions.

  • Sessions act as a global cache (in memory or on disk) to speed up various server tasks, including login. With further extensions like, sessions could serve as a “distributed” cache.

  • Sessions prevent sending passwords in plain text or any other form. After that, all session interactions take place via a shared secret key.


All services other than ISession, assume that a user is logging in with a username equal to session uuid. Whereas previously one logged in with:

ome.system.Principal p = new ome.system.Principal("josh","user","User");

behind the scenes, now the “josh” value is replaced by the UUID of a ome.model.meta.Session instance.

The session is acquired by a call to:

ome.api.ISession.createSession(Principal princpal, String credentials);

and carries information related to the current user’s session.

Session session;
session.getUuid();       // Unique identifier; functions as a temporary password. DO NOT SHARE IT.
session.getTimeToIdle(); // Number of milliseconds which the user can idle without session timeout
session.getTimeToLive(); // Total number of milliseconds for which the session can live
session.getStarted();    // Start of session
session.getClosed();     // if != null, then session is closed

These properties cannot be modified.

Other properties are for use by clients:

session.getMessage();            // General purpose message statement
session.getAgent();              // Can be used to specify which program the user is using
session.getDefaultEventType();   // Default event type (the third argument "User" to Principal above)
session.getDefaultPermissions(); // String representation of umask (e.g. "rw----")

After changing a property on the session returned by createSession() it is possible to save them to the server via:


Finally, when finished, to conserve resources it is possible to destroy the session via:


Existing sessions

In OMERO.blitz, it is possible to reacquire the session if it is still active, by passing the previous session UUID as your password (User principal is ignored).

client = omero.client()
servicefactory = client.createSession()
iadmin = servicefactory.getAdminService()
olduuid = iadmin.getEventContext().sessionUuid

// lose connection

client = omero.client()
servicefactory = client.createSession(omero.sys.Principal(), olduuid)
// now reattached