This documentation is for Dovecot v1.x, see wiki2 for v2.x documentation.


Authentication is split into four parts:

  1. Authentication mechanisms

  2. Password schemes

  3. Password databases

  4. User databases

Authentication mechanisms vs. password schemes

Authentication mechanisms and password schemes are often confused, because they have somewhat similar values. For example there is a PLAIN auth mechanism and PLAIN password scheme. But they mean completely different things.