LDAP stands for Lightweight Directory Access Protocol. As the name suggests, it is a lightweight client-server protocol for accessing directory services, specifically X.500-based directory services. LDAP runs over TCP/IP or other connection oriented transfer services. LDAP is defined in RFC2251 "The Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (v3). A directory is similar to a database, but tends to contain more descriptive, attribute-based information. The information in a directory is generally read much more often than it is written. Directories are tuned to give quick-response to high-volume lookup or search operations. They may have the ability to replicate information widely in order to increase availability and reliability, while reducing response time. When directory information is replicated, temporary inconsistencies between the replicas may be OK, as long as they get in sync eventually.

LDAP is quickly gaining acceptance as the directory service structure for the internet. It has many features that make it ideal for providing network information services, including encryption support, access control lists, fast read accesss, etc.. LDAP will combine several systems that normaly have to be maintained seperately , such as NT authentication, UNIX authentication, MTA routing information, services/protocols/hosts information, network address books, etc.
* Key knowledge area(s):
o LDAP configuration files, tools and utilities
o Importing items from LDIF files
o Change user passwords
* The following is a partial list of the used files, terms and utilities:
o slapd
o slapd.conf

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