Cloud Directory Feature Active Directory® Integration

Written by George Lattimore on June 17, 2018

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There has been an awakening in the identity management space—have you felt it? Star Wars™ references aside, a new player has emerged on the scene and is changing the game: the cloud directory. Of the many interesting capabilities this new cloud identity management platform is bringing to the table, the cloud directory feature called Active Directory Integration is among the biggest innovations making waves through the identity management industry.

Bridge Over Troubled Active Directory (AD)

ad bridge

So, what is AD Integration, and how does this new feature relate to a cloud directory? First off, we’re all well aware that the on-prem identity provider for most organizations is still Microsoft® Active Directory. But as IT organizations continue making the leap to the cloud, identity management in particular is one area that struggles to get off the ground.

Historically, ties to Active Directory have run deep for IT organizations because of a heavy reliance on Windows®-based systems and applications. From this dependency, many IT applications have also relied on AD for authentication. The result is that even though IT admins may want to make the leap to a cloud directory, they’re shackled by AD, and unable to break free.

From Feature to Full Cloud Directory

Cloud directory feature

With the ability to securely manage and connect user identities to Mac® and Linux® systems, AWS® cloud servers, web applications, non-Windows file servers, and WiFiTM networks, the benefits to using a cloud directory are simply too good to ignore. All of these capabilities can act complimentary to AD, and imply the need for an identity bridge from AD to a cloud directory.

In other words, AD Integration was conceptualized to give IT organizations the benefits of leveraging non-Windows IT platforms while retaining their on-prem Active Directory instance. Using the AD Integration as a stepping stone can be a worthwhile compromise to help organizations leverage the cloud in a hybrid format.

The cloud identity management platform, JumpCloud® Directory-as-a-Service®, delivers the cloud directory feature AD Integration as a core offering of the platform. IT admins simply install a lightweight agent, called AD Import, on their domain controllers to sync AD identities with the cloud directory. Any changes within AD are automatically passed along to the cloud directory via the identity bridge.

The feature is bi-directional, meaning admins can also use an AD Integration agent, called AD Sync, to write passwords from JumpCloud back to AD as well at an additional cost.

JumpCloud Directory-as-a-Service

Has this post sparked questions for how JumpCloud’s Cloud Directory feature, Active Directory Integration, can help your IT organization transition to the cloud? Contact us directly, and one of our experts will be happy to provide answers, or set you up with a personalized demo. If you’re ready to explore JumpCloud Directory-as-a-Service for yourself, go ahead and sign up. The first 10 users you register are free, forever.

George Lattimore

George is a writer at JumpCloud, a central source for authenticating, authorizing, and managing your IT infrastructure through the cloud. With a degree in Marketing and an MS in Public Communications and Technology, George enjoys writing about how the IT landscape is adapting to a diversified field of technology.

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