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Active Directory and Linux guide

Integration of Active Directory and Linux <<previous|next>>

Is there a Linux collaboration tool that integrates well with Microsoft AD?

Is there a Linux collaboration tool that integrates well with Microsoft Active Directory? This is needed for the transition to OpenLDAP or another LDAP.
For organizations that have embraced Windows desktops and LANs, Active Directory is frequently a focal point for managing and securing Windows user accounts, clients and servers. OpenLDAP and other LDAP-compliant directories offer similar capabilities and have the additional advantage of being non-proprietary and lower-cost solutions.

A single centralized directory infrastructure that integrates with the organization's enterprise applications reduces complexity, management overhead and costs. Given the popularity of Active Directory and LDAP-based directories, many developers of collaborative applications offer these integrations as standard features. Linux messaging and collaboration products that integrate with Microsoft Active Directory include IBM Lotus Notes/Domino, Novell GroupWise, Kerio MailServer and the Scalix Email and Calendaring Platform. You will want a thorough understanding of the degree to which these products integrate or interoperate with Active Directory and LDAP-based directories. Specific questions along the following lines will help provide clarity.

  • Is Active Directory integration present in the application?
  • If so, is Active Directory the master directory for the application?
  • If changes to a user record are made in Active Directory, are they reflected in the application?
  • Does the application integrate with advanced Active Directory capabilities such as account provisioning, authentication, single sign-on and user management?
  • Which LDAP-compatible directories are certified against the collaborative application?
  • If changes to a user record are made in the LDAP directory, are they reflected in the application?
  • Does the application integrate with services coordinated through the LDAP directory such as account provisioning, authentication, and user management?
  • What migration services are offered to plan and execute the transition from Active Directory to an LDAP directory for the collaborative application?
While migrating from Active Directory to OpenLDAP requires planning, it also offers many benefits, not the least of which is cost savings. For example, with Active Directory, there are license fees for every client that logs onto the network, whereas, with OpenLDAP, there are no per-client fees.

You can search for additional collaborative applications on Linux on the Red Hat Solutions catalog and at various online application catalogs such as Knowledgestorm.

26 May 2004