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USENIX Technical Program - Abstract - USENIX Annual Conference, Freenix Session - June 2000

Extending Internet Services Via LDAP

James E. Dutton, Southern Illinois University


This project report examines the use of an LDAP (Lightweight Directory Access Protocol) V2 server to provide an easily accessible data storage facility. The main purpose of the LDAP database is to store related information based on a common thread such as a person's name, an organization's name, or the description of a service offered, in a simple yet hierarchical structure.

The use of LDAP enables new fields to be added to existing user information to 1) enable end-users to store pertinent user information to be used by a mainframe-to-PC intermediary file server using Samba, 2) enable new groupings of electronic mail distributions to be created with little or no change to Sendmail, and 3) enhance the granularity of InterNetworkNews (Usenet) article submission acceptance capabilities.

Some additional benefits of these facilities included using a single, non-proprietary database which required very little new coding to make use of. The data used for the various facilities were easily associated with database objects defined for enterprise personnel. The administration load for each service was reduced since service related data, such as userids or mailboxes, were not maintained directly as a part of the specific service. The Internet Directory Service, as provided by the LDAP server, is accessible by several methods, rather than just one specialized or proprietary interface.

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Last changed: 6 Feb 2002 ml
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