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Part: V Appendices > Working with Lightweight Directory Access Protocol

Working with Lightweight Directory Access Protocol

LDAP is sometimes called a wire protocol, which is merely a way of saying it defines the methods used for the exchange of information between the client and server. LDAP is a series of messages, called protocol data units (PDUs) that are exchanged between the client and server using either TCP or User Datagram Protocol (UDP). As you learned in Appendix A, both TCP and UDP in turn make use of the IP for sending data between computers.

LDAP PDUs are used to connect to an LDAP-compatible server and to authenticate the client to the server. Other PDUs are used to search the directory and manage error handling. In order to start a session with a directory server, the LDAP client first must bind to the server database. The PDU sent should contain the name of the directory object to which the client wants to bind, the version of the LDAP protocol the client is using, and specific information used to authenticate the client to the directory.


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