Auth_Type Configuration of phpmyadmin
Here is what I have found out about which strings are pulled by the configuration auth_type of phpmyadmin.
When auth_type = ‘config’ and user and password are also set, this will let you log into your server once phpmyadmin is run
When auth_type = ‘cookie’, phpmyadmin will ask for you to login rather than login straight away, and no user and password is needed for this mode, this is also a reason I like using this mode.
Here is a screen shot for phpmyadmin when it is using cookie as auth_type.