I asterisked the word “painless” in the title of this post since Vidoop’s downfall certainly isn’t painless for its employees, many of whom I call friends. But as an OpenID user taking advantage of delegation, the process of switching providers is fairly straightforward.
The quick backstory for those of you wondering What Is OpenID Delegation: Delegation allows one to use a URL that is not an OpenID provider as their claimed OpenID URL. A bit of code that is embedded in the headers of that URL contains redirection code so that OpenID requests are sent to the actual OpenID provider.
In my case, I’d been using Vidoop’s MyVidoop product as my OpenID provider. I added code to the header section of http://www.aaronhockley.com so that I could give that out as my OpenID URL. When I made an OpenID claim using that URL, the code would redirect the request to Vidoop, where I would authenticate, and be redirected back to the relying party. The sites that use OpenID record my aaronhockley.com address, but I authenticated using Vidoop’s secure system.
With Vidoop about to disappear, I needed a new OpenID provider. I chose VeriSign’s PIP system due to their support for two-factor authentication. After signing up for PIP, I updated the code on aaronhockley.com to point to VeriSign’s servers, and that’s the end of the story. I can continue to use aaronhockley.com as my OpenID URL even though my provider has changed, and all of my accounts across the web that are linked to that URL will still work without any disruption in service.