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ITWorld: Is there a need for OpenLDAP?

Jul 03, 2001, 23:00 (50 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Dave Kearns)

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The author, who admits he's not a fan of Open Source software, questions whether OpenLDAP is needed in the rapidly evolving directory space, where there are freely available solutions that do the same thing.

"Readers of my Wired Windows column in Network World know that I'm not a big fan of the open source movement -- at least as far as commercial-grade software is concerned. For that reason, I haven't paid much attention to Open Lightweight Directory Access Protocol, the open source directory service...."

" OpenLDAP did fill a need for an easily obtainable, LDAP-enabled directory service with a low entry price (it's free - but you had to compile the source code). Shoestring funded start-ups in the directory-enabled applications business could use it for building and testing their software, and even recommend it to clients who didn't have an installed directory service (or didn't know they had one). Now that Novell is giving away eDirectory to independent software vendors and Active Directory is included with Windows 2000 servers, those reasons go away."

"Since the initial reasons for the OpenLDAP project no longer exist, I'd like to suggest a change. Let's forget about duplicating commercial efforts to create data repositories and directory services. Instead, let's focus on creating directory-enabled applications that leverage the installed base of LDAP-enabled directory services. Give users some concrete applications that make use of the authentication, authorization and personalization mechanisms the directory makes available. That would be a public service."

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