Can I use this gem alongside standard Devise?

Yes! But you will need to enable the support of separate routes for standard Devise. So do something like this:


DeviseTokenAuth.setup do |config|
config.enable_standard_devise_support = true


Rails.application.routes.draw do
# standard devise routes available at /users
# NOTE: make sure this comes first!!!
devise_for :users
# token auth routes available at /api/v1/auth
namespace :api do
scope :v1 do
mount_devise_token_auth_for 'User', at: 'auth'

Another method for using this gem alongside standard Devise (updated May 2018)

Some users have been experiencing issues with using this gem alongside standard Devise, with the config.enable_standard_devise_support = true method.

Another method suggested by jotolo is to have separate child application_controller.rb files that use either DeviseTokenAuth or standard Devise, which all inherit from a base application_controller.rb file. For example, you could have an api/v1/application_controller.rb file for the API of your app (which would use Devise Token Auth), and a admin/application_controller.rb file for the full stack part of your app (using standard Devise). The idea is to redirect each flow in your application to the appropriate child application_controller.rb file. Example code below:


Child application controller for your API, using DeviseTokenAuth.

module Api
module V1
class ApplicationController < ::ApplicationController
skip_before_action :verify_authenticity_token
include DeviseTokenAuth::Concerns::SetUserByToken


Child application controller for full stack section, using standard Devise.

module Admin
class ApplicationController < ::ApplicationController
before_action :authenticate_admin!


The base application controller file. If you're using CSRF token protection, you can skip it in the API specific application controller (api/v1/application_controller.rb).

class ApplicationController < ActionController::Base
protect_from_forgery with: :exception


Keep the enable_standard_devise_support configuration commented out or set to false.

# config.enable_standard_devise_support = false

Why are the new routes included if this gem doesn't use them?

Removing the new routes will require significant modifications to devise. If the inclusion of the new routes is causing your app any problems, post an issue in the issue tracker and it will be addressed ASAP.

I'm having trouble using this gem alongside ActiveAdmin...

For some odd reason, ActiveAdmin extends from your own app's ApplicationController. This becomes a problem if you include the DeviseTokenAuth::Concerns::SetUserByToken concern in your app's ApplicationController.

The solution is to use two separate ApplicationController classes - one for your API, and one for ActiveAdmin. Something like this:

# app/controllers/api_controller.rb
# API routes extend from this controller
class ApiController < ActionController::Base
include DeviseTokenAuth::Concerns::SetUserByToken
# app/controllers/application_controller.rb
# leave this for ActiveAdmin, and any other non-api routes
class ApplicationController < ActionController::Base

How can I use this gem with Grape?

You may be interested in GrapeTokenAuth or GrapeDeviseTokenAuth.

What's the reset password flow?

This is the overall workflow for a User to reset their password:

  • user goes to a page on the front end site which contains a form with a single text field, they type their email address into this field and click a button to submit the form

  • that form submission sends a request to the API: POST /auth/password with some parameters: email (the email supplied in the field) & redirect_url (a page in the front end site that will contain a form with password and password_confirmation fields)

  • the API responds to this request by generating a reset_password_token and sending an email (the reset_password_instructions.html.erb file from devise) to the email address provided within the email parameter

    • we need to modify the reset_password_instructions.html.erb file to point to the API: GET /auth/password/edit

    • for example, if you have your API under the api/v1 namespaces: <%= link_to 'Change my password', edit_api_v1_user_password_url(reset_password_token: @token, config: message['client-config'].to_s, redirect_url: message['redirect-url'].to_s) %> (I came up with this link_to by referring to this line)

  • the user clicks the link in the email, which brings them to the 'Verify user by password reset token' endpoint (GET /password/edit)

  • this endpoint verifies the user and redirects them to the redirect_url (or the one you set in an initializer as default_password_reset_url) with the auth headers if they are who they claim to be (if their reset_password_token matches a User record)

  • this redirect_url is a page on the frontend which contains a password and password_confirmation field

  • the user submits the form on this frontend page, which sends a request to API: PUT /auth/password with the password and password_confirmation parameters. In addition headers need to be included from the url params (you get these from the url as query params). A side note, ensure that the header names follow the convention outlined in config/initializers/devise_token_auth.rb; at this time of writing it is: uid, client and access-token.

    • Ensure that the uid sent in the headers is not URL-escaped. e.g. it should be, not

  • the API changes the user's password and responds back with a success message

  • the front end needs to manually redirect the user to its login page after receiving this success response

  • the user logs in

The next diagram shows how it works:

password reset flow

If you get in any trouble configuring or overriding the behavior, you can check the issue #604.

I already have a user, how can I add the new fields?

  1. First, remove the migration generated by the following commandrails g devise_token_auth:install [USER_CLASS] [MOUNT_PATH] and then:.

  2. Create another fresh migration:

# create migration by running a command like this (where `User` is your USER_CLASS table):
# `rails g migration AddTokensToUsers provider:string uid:string tokens:text`
def up
add_column :users, :provider, :string, null: false, default: 'email'
add_column :users, :uid, :string, null: false, default: ''
add_column :users, :tokens, :text
# if your existing User model does not have an existing **encrypted_password** column uncomment below line.
# add_column :users, :encrypted_password, :null => false, :default => ""
# the following will update your models so that when you run your migration
# updates the user table immediately with the above defaults
# finds all existing users and updates them.
# if you change the default values above you'll also have to change them here below:
User.find_each do |user|
user.uid =
user.provider = 'email'!
# to speed up lookups to these columns:
add_index :users, [:uid, :provider], unique: true
def down
# if you added **encrypted_password** above, add here to successfully rollback
remove_columns :users, :provider, :uid, :tokens