2 Factor Authentication Worries

First off, I love Github Classroom, as it has solved a lot of issues that I have had in the past. Now there are nits and features that I would like, but overall, happy.

That said, I am extremely worried about the required switch to 2 Factor Authentication in August, if I am to believe the warning emails that I continuously receive. This is a concern for me, because I am worried about having students use another system to provide that 2nd authentication, which is something that my school district is likely to have 2nd thoughts about.

Is there a way for schools that use Github Classroom to not have to continue to use the product without being required to switch to 2FA?

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Hi @liberty-bradleyd

I’m a maintainer of a few GH organizations, among which there are a few we use for the classroom, and I’ve never received any notifications in this sense. Could you maybe post some of those messages?

I’m also following GH feeds daily and I’ve never come across similar announcements, which should have been certainly posted ahead of time considering that this switch would have really a far-reaching impact.

Here is what the emails look like.

You recently used a password to access the repository at LibertyHS/AP_CS_A_Array_FRQ_2020 with git using JGit/4.9.2.201712150930-r.

Basic authentication using a password to Git is deprecated and will soon no longer work. Visit https://nam02.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fgithub.blog%2F2020-12-15-token-authentication-requirements-for-git-operations%2F&data=04|01|dbradley%40lwsd.org|34dee76f839b4fbcb10a08d90dedd5e4|1fd4673fdf9646218638a1d88c4c85d7|0|0|637556137424274451|Unknown|TWFpbGZsb3d8eyJWIjoiMC4wLjAwMDAiLCJQIjoiV2luMzIiLCJBTiI6Ik1haWwiLCJXVCI6Mn0%3D|1000&sdata=pDb06aWMWilxibo2QQiDdTUGoF%2Fx5k6RrUHyOHIIm28%3D&reserved=0 for more information around suggested workarounds and removal dates.

Thanks,
The GitHub Team

These messages go into my “other” view on not in my Focused view

It’s all true then!
I’ve checked on the internet and landed on this official post.

I might have overlooked it as GitHub posted similar announcements but for the API and not for Git operations.

Don’t worry @liberty-bradleyd; you won’t be forced to enable 2FA as you can get away with less by using a simple PAT in place of the password.

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Thanks @pattacini!

I’ll try out the PAT functionality AFTER I get through all of the AP exam review. Don’t want to troubleshoot problems with that beforehand.

The change doesn’t affect GitHub desktop - is that not an option for you?

Also, the change doesn’t require 2FA - it just doesn’t affect 2FA users because they already couldn’t authenticate with just a username/password over HTTPS.

Every app that is installed on students’ computers goes through a painfully long and slow approval process through the school district, so GitHub desktop really isn’t a good option for us.

I have students use the eGit support built into Eclipse. Eclipse has already been approved by the district.

Using personal access tokens is probably going to end up being your solution. My district’s IT might just be bad at locking down computers, but I was actually able to install GitHub desktop without admin privileges - I still ran it by my principal first though.

Thanks!

Personal access tokens seem like they are going to be the way to go. Of course, there are pros and cons each way, as GitHub has some functionality that eGit does not.

Visual Studio Code is another option. It’s been great having my students working entirely in VS Code for everything we do using GitHub and GHC. I imagine a lot of school districts are more comfortable adding another Microsoft product, rather than a vendor they’re unfamiliar with.

Rob

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