Azure Active Directory Pass-through Authentication

Ganesh Chauhan, Technical Support Specialist, Microsoft Azure

Utilizing Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) Pass-through Authentication, your users may log in to both on-premises and cloud-based services using the same credentials. Because they have one fewer password to remember and are less likely to forget how to log in, your users will enjoy a better user experience and your IT support costs will go down. Users’ credentials are directly checked against your on-premises Active Directory when they log in using Azure AD.

This function is an alternative to Azure AD Password Hash Synchronization, which offers businesses the same advantage of cloud authentication. However, some businesses may want to employ Pass-through Authentication in place of it in order to enforce their on-premises Active Directory security and password restrictions. Examine this manual for a comparison of the different Azure AD sign-in procedures and advice on how to select the best sign-in procedure for your company.

Pass-through authentication and the Seamless Single Sign-On functionality can work together. As a result, your users won’t have to enter their passwords each time they access apps on their company computers while connected to your business network.

Benefits of utilizing Azure AD Pass-through Authentication: –

Great user experience

  • Users sign into both on-premises and cloud-based applications using the same credentials.
  • Password-related difficulties are resolved more quickly by users as compared to other IT helpdesk concerns.
  • In the cloud, users can complete self-service password management chores.

Simple to administer and deploy

  • No requirement for intricate network setup or on-premises deployments.
  • Only requires the on-premises installation of a small agent.
  • No overhead for management. Enhancements and bug fixes are automatically applied to the agent.


  • Passwords used on-premises are never saved in any way on the cloud.
  • protects your user accounts by integrating smoothly with Azure AD Conditional Access settings, prohibiting legacy authentication, and filtering out brute force password attempts.
  • The agent never connects outside of your network. Therefore, it is not necessary to put the agent on a perimeter network, often known as a DMZ.
  • Using certificate-based authentication, communication between an agent and Azure AD is protected. Azure AD renews these certifications on auto-pilot every few months.

High availability

  • For increased sign-in request availability, more agents can be placed on various on-premises servers.


Highlight features: – 

  • Supports user sign-in into all web browser-based applications and Microsoft Office client programs that employ modern authentication.
  • UserPrincipalName, the default username for on-premises users, or another property set up in Azure AD Connect can be used as the sign-in username (known as Alternate ID).
  • To further protect your users, the feature effortlessly integrates with Conditional Access capabilities like Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA).
  • Integrated with cloud-based self-service password management, which includes password writeback to local Active Directory and password protection by prohibiting widely used passwords.
  • If your AD forests have forest trusts for each other and name suffix routing is set up properly, multi-forest environments are supported.
  • You can use it with any edition of Azure AD, regardless of whether it is a premium or free feature.
  • Through Azure AD Connect, it is enabled.
  • It makes use of a compact on-premises agent to monitor and react to requests for password validation.
  • Requests for sign-in are very available when several agents are installed.
  • It guards your local accounts from cloud-based brute-force password attempts.

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