(Originally posted at Cloud Avenue)

Windows Live™Microsoft’s Windows Live ID team just announced their support for OpenID calling it a “de facto standard Web protocol for user authentication.”

Beginning today, Windows Live™ ID is publicly committing to support the OpenID digital identity framework with the announcement of the public availability of a Community Technology Preview (CTP) of the Windows Live ID OpenID Provider.

You will soon be able to use your Windows Live ID account to sign in to any OpenID Web site!

What does it means for users?

OpenID allows users to maintain their identity information (Name, E-Mail, address, etc.) on a single provider and use that information to register and login to any website that supports OpenID. This relieves the user from having to fill out registration form and maintaining multiple different user names and passwords and profiles on different sites add provides a simplified online experience while increasing security.

Over 400 million LiveID users will soon be able to use their LiveID to do just that – login and provide identity information to any site supporting OpenID without the hassles of filling out registration forms and saving user\password information and with the user experience common to all OpenId sites (or, maybe even common to their familiar LiveID user interface?)

The wide adoption of OpenID led by Yahoo and Microsoft provides the required push for site owners to support OpenID providing the same simple and familiar login interface everywhere…

What does it mean for web developers?

With a simple integration effort that shouldn’t take more than a couple of minutes, site owners can relieve themselves from taking care of authentication and registration process while providing their users with a simple familiar interface for signing up and using their services.
OpenID provides an easy and secure mechanism for authenticating and registering users, and with additional online services (like JanRain’s RPX) site owners can handover the entire care of handling their user information to the cloud – cheaper, faster, more secure.

For now, the LiveID team is testing their system’s OpenID Provider which is at a CTP (Community Technology Preview) stage. Widespread support is planned for “sometime in 2009″.

[Update: Screencast Overview]


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