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Advantages of LDAP | disadvantages of LDAP

This page covers advantages and disadvantages of LDAP. It mentions LDAP advantages or benefits and LDAP disadvantages or drawbacks.

What is LDAP?

• It stands for Lightweight Directory Access Protocol and it uses client-server architecture.
• It is application protocol used to manage and access distributed directory over IP network.
• It helps in providing directory service with systematic set of records organized in hierarchical structure.
• Clients may be directly controlled by individuals, embedded in applications or "agents".
• It can be used when integrating multiple directory services.
• Analogy: It is similar to telephone directory containing contact numbers and addresses of the subscribers.

LDAP Working

• To commence LDAP session, client needs to connect with server (called as "Directory System Agent"). By default server is set to use TCP port number 389.
• After connection is established, client and server can exchange the information or data.
• Various operations can be performed on LDAP such as Add, Bind, Delete, Modify, Unbind etc.

Benefits or advantages of LDAP

Following are the benefits or advantages of LDAP:
➨Global naming model ensures unique entries.
➨It allows use of multiple independent directories.
➨It is extensible to meet future/local requirements.
➨It runs over TCP/IP and SSL directly.
➨It has wider support across the industries.
➨The protocol is based on existing deployed technologies.
➨LDAP is used by many services like TCP and DNS.
➨It is open source protocol with very flexible architecture.
➨LDAP is automated and hence updating of the same is much easier unlike DNS.

Drawbacks or disadvantages of LDAP

Following are the disadvantages of LDAP:
➨It requires directory servers to be LDAP compliant for service to be deployed.
➨LDAP is difficult but rarely employed unlike DNS which is more easy to use and widely employed.

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