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Lesson 6. Using Open Directory > Configuring Open Directory

Configuring Open Directory

Using Server Admin, a computer running Mac OS X Server can be set up in four ways:

  • As a standalone server, the server does not provide directory information to other computers or get directory information from an existing system. The local directory cannot be shared.

  • As a server connected to a directory system, you can set up the server to provide services that require user accounts and authentication, such as file and mail services, but use accounts that are set up on another server.

  • As an Open Directory replica, a server hosts a replicated version of a directory. The replica is synchronized periodically with the master. An LDAP server that receives a request from a user takes responsibility for the request, passing it to other LDAP servers as necessary but ensuring a single coordinated response for the user. This helps balance the load by distributing the work between one LDAP master and x number of replicas.

  • As an Open Directory master, a server can provide directory information and authentication information to other systems as the host of a shared LDAP directory. In addition, the server authenticates users whose accounts are stored in the shared LDAP directory. This is the best use of a Mac OS X server because all users can now be placed in the LDAP directory for remote authentication instead of local authentication.


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