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Open SUSE® 11.0 and SUSE® Linux® Enterprise Server Bible by Justin Davies, Roger Whittaker

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Chapter 25. Network Information and Directory Services

IN THIS CHAPTER

  • Using NIS for authentication

  • Setting up a NIS server

  • Configuring NIS clients

  • What is LDAP?

  • Implementing OpenLDAP

  • Integrating Linux with LDAP

If a large number of clients are mounting directories from a number of NFS servers, the same users may exist on multiple clients, but their user and group IDs may not be consistent. This inevitably leads to horrible problems with file permissions. Any setup with multiple clients in which the same users can exist on more than one client faces this kind of problem, unless the /etc/passwd and /etc/group files on all the clients are identical, or at least contain identical information for each particular user.

Additionally, in any such environment, maintaining a local set of users and local authentication on each machine is a huge administrative problem.

So, just as DHCP (see Chapter 20) solves the question of how to maintain local network configurations on multiple machines by centralizing the configuration of IP addresses, a solution is needed to the question of how to centralize user and group IDs and user authentication.

This chapter looks at two such solutions:

  • The Network Information Service (NIS) that was pioneered by Sun Microsystems

  • A more flexible and extensible system: openLDAP, an open source implementation of the Lightweight Directory Access Protocol

Using NIS for Authentication

NIS was originally developed by Sun and called "Yellow Pages," but the name was dropped after a legal ...

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