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I am trying to setup OpenLDAP for the first time. I have read through the admin guide but I am still stumped at hows things work and am looking for an explanation on a few things. I would like to setup Openldap to use to authenticate the various unix and linux machines that I have around so that all groups users etc are synced. I would also like to be able to use the openldap server to authenticate my email system wich I have not setup up yet. As well as the above I would also like to have mozzila thunderbird use the Openldap for address booking and what not. The basic plan is to integrate as many services as I can with Openldap.

The part where I am stumped after all my reading is where do you define the database and the attributes that go along with an entry. My understanding is that there are already predefined atrribute which one would use. Is there already a specification on what a database should look like for authenticating posix users and if so can you extend that to incorporate the services I have mentioned above?

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

I can recommend reading LDAP for Rocket Scientists to wrap your head around the basics of LDAP and administrating OpenLDAP.

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The last specification about using LDAP as a naming service is described in RFC2307bis but Linux usually uses the older spec. This blog has useful information about Linux and Unix LDAP clients and RFC2307 support

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