User Guide | User Account Configuration

The key concept of the flexi auth library is to give the developer a toolbox of functions that they can use to build a user authentication system matching the custom specifications required by their site.

One of the ways that the library enhances the customisation of the authentication system is by allowing many of the internal library settings to be defined by the developer via the libraries config file.

User Account Configuration

User Account Index | Get User Account Data | Set User Account Data

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Config Name: The name that flexi auth internally references the config setting by.

Default: The default value set within the config file.

Data Type: The data type that is expected by the config setting.

  • bool : Requires a boolean value of 'TRUE' or 'FALSE'.
  • string : Requires a textual value.
  • int : Requires a numeric value. It does not matter whether the value is an integer, float, decimal etc.
  • array : Requires an array.
  • datetime : Requires a datetime value. Typically either a MySQL DATETIME (2000-12-31 12:00:00) or UNIX timestamp (1234567890)

Config File Location

The config file is located in CodeIgniters 'config' folder and is named 'flexi_auth.php'.

Schema Diagram : User Account Table

A database table schema diagram, showing how the primary user account table is the core table within the flexi auth library, linking to each of the other tables used by the library.

Note: Table and columns names are defined using their config names referenced within the config file. The names within brackets are the default demo names.

Primary User Account Table

The primary user account table contains all of the columns required for different functions within the flexi auth library.

Table and Column Setup
Config Name Default Data Type Description
table user_accounts - The tables name.
join user_accounts.uacc_id - The tables foreign key used to join with foreign keys of other tables.
id uacc_id int The tables primary key.
group_id uacc_group_fk int The foreign key used to join with the user group table.
email uacc_email string The users email address.
username uacc_username string The users login username.
password uacc_password string The users password.
ip_address uacc_ip_address string The ip address of the last visit from the user.
salt uacc_salt string A database salt unique to each user that is used when salting passwords.
activation_token uacc_activation_token string The account activation token assigned to a user upon registration.
forgot_password_token uacc_forgotten_password_token string The reset a forgotten password token assigned to a user upon requesting to reset their 'forgotten' password.
forgot_password_expire uacc_forgotten_password_expire datetime The date that the forgotten password token expires by.
update_email_token uacc_update_email_token string The update email token assigned to a user upon updating their email address. The token verifies whether the email account is registered to the user.
update_email uacc_update_email string The email address that is to be updated to the user upon verification.
active uacc_active int Defines whether the users account has been activated.
suspend uacc_suspend int Defined whether the users account has been suspended/banned, meaning the user can no longer login.
failed_logins uacc_fail_login_attempts int The number of failed login attempts that have been made to a users account since their last successful login.
failed_login_ip uacc_fail_login_ip_address string The ip address of the user that made the last failed login attempt to a users account.
failed_login_ban_date uacc_date_fail_login_ban datetime If a users account has too many failed logins, its can be banned from being logged into until the defined date.
last_login_date uacc_date_last_login datetime The last successful login date into a users account.
date_added uacc_date_added datetime The date the users account was created.
custom_columns - array Custom columns can be added to the main user account table to enable library functions to handle additional custom data stored within the table.
The custom columns names are defined via an array.
// Defining the table, join and column names.
$config['database']['user_acc']['table'] = 'user_accounts';
$config['database']['user_acc']['join'] = 'user_accounts.uacc_id';
$config['database']['user_acc']['columns']['id'] = 'uacc_id';

// Defining custom column names within the table.
$config['database']['user_acc']['custom_columns'] = array('date_modified', 'modified_user_id');

Custom User Tables

Additional custom tables that are directly related to the user account table can be included in flexi auth CRUD functions by setting their database structure via the the $config['database']['custom'] array.

Typically, such examples of a custom table you may wish to link to the user account table would be a user profile table listing the users name and contact details etc.

Table and Column Setup
Config Name Default Name Data Type Description
table * Custom * - The tables name.
primary_key * Custom * - The tables primary key.
foreign_key * Custom * - The tables foreign key, intended to join the table with the primary key of the primary user account table.
join * Custom * - The full length table name and foreign key column used to join the table, example 'custom_table_name.foreign_key_name'.
custom_columns * Custom * array An array of all the other column names within the table.

You are not required to include any custom tables if not needed.

You are not limited to the number of different custom tables you can define.

All custom column names in ALL custom tables should be uniquely named. Otherwise, if the update_custom_user_data() is used, it could match the wrong columns when trying to match a primary key column and array data.

// Example of defining a custom table for capturing user address data.
$config['database']['custom']['user_address']['table'] = 'user_address';
$config['database']['custom']['user_address']['primary_key'] = 'user_address_id';
$config['database']['custom']['user_address']['foreign_key'] = 'user_account_fk';
$config['database']['custom']['user_address']['join'] = 'user_address.user_account_fk';
$config['database']['custom']['user_address']['custom_columns'] = array(

User Account Database Config Settings

Define user account database settings.

Table and Column Setup
Config Name Data Type Default Description
primary_identity_col string uacc_email

Set the column to be used to primarily identify users within the user account table.

Note: Only the 'email' or 'username' columns can be used.

identity_cols array array('uacc_email', 'uacc_username')

Set whether the users email address, username or both are to be used to identify users from data submitted via a login form.
This MUST include the 'primary_identity_col' column (Default 'uacc_email').

If both the email address and username are used, then users will be able to login by submitting either value.

Note: Only the 'email' and/or 'username' columns can be used.

search_user_cols array array('uacc_email', 'uacc_username')

Set the table columns that are looked-up by the libraries search_users() function to match users against submitted search query terms.

By default, the config file is defined to only lookup the 'email' and 'username' columns. However, if using custom user tables capturing user profile data etc, those columns can be added to this config setting.

date_time PHP Date Function date('Y-m-d H:i:s')

Set a native PHP function to format the date and time correctly to be stored within the user tables.

Typically this will either be either DATETIME or TIMESTAMP
MySQL DATETIME = date('Y-m-d H:i:s');
Unix TIMESTAMP = time();

Note: Ensure you consistently use the same data type in all defined flexi auth tables for date and time data.

// Defining the primary idenity column within the user account table.
// Note: Only the user 'email' or 'username' columns can be used.
$config['database']['settings']['primary_identity_col'] = 'uacc_email';

// Defining which user table columns are used to identify a user via data submitted by a login form.
$config['database']['settings']['identity_cols'] = array('uacc_email', 'uacc_username');

// Defining which user table columns are searched via the libraries search_users() function.
$config['database']['settings']['search_user_cols'] = array('uacc_email', 'upro_first_name', 'upro_last_name');

// Defining the date and time format that will be saved to the database.
// This example uses the native PHP function date(), to format the value as '2000-12-31 12:00:00'.
$config['database']['settings']['date_time'] = date('Y-m-d H:i:s');

User Account Behaviour Config Settings

Define user account behaviour settings used when handling data related to the primary user account table.

Table and Column Setup
Config Name Data Type Default Description
auto_increment_username bool false

Set whether an incremented number is added to the end of an unavailable username.

Example: If username 'flexi' is already in use, the next user to use 'flexi' as their username will be automatically updated to 'flexi1'.

Note: This only applies if the username is not set as the primary identity column via the setting 'primary_identity_col'.

suspend_new_accounts bool false Set whether accounts are suspended by default on registration / inserting user.
This option allows admins to verify account details before enabling users.
account_activation_time_limit int 0 Set a time limit to grant users instant login access, once expired, they are locked out until they activate their account via an activation email sent to them.
// Defining whether to auto increment a duplicate username.
$config['settings']['auto_increment_username'] = FALSE;

// Defining whether to suspend all new account upon registration until reviewed by a moderator.
$config['settings']['suspend_new_accounts'] = FALSE;

// Defining a time period that users will be able to access their for, until they activate the account via email.
// Time is defined in minutes.
$config['settings']['account_activation_time_limit'] = 60; // 60 minutes