The Open Science Grid provides access to compute and storage resources using X509Grid User Certificates which are part of a Public Key Infrastructure. Grid User Certificates are just another form of authorization and are as easy to use as passwords or ssh keys. The technical details and the implementation of the public key infrastructure do not need to be a concern to the grid user.
Each Grid User Certificate is associated with a Distinguished Name; a unique string containing the full name of the grid user for identification. This DN is used by resource providers to map grid users to local Unix accounts on the compute and storage resources.
Apply for a Grid User Certificate
The way to apply for a Grid User Certificate is using your web browser. Once the Grid Certificate is issued you may export and install it on a Unix resource to use it.