Google Apps LDAP Authentication

By Rajat Bhargava Posted May 19, 2016

Google Apps (now called G Suite™) has quickly become a leading business platform. Over six million organizations are leveraging its capabilities with over sixty million users. The allure is the shift to the cloud. No longer do organizations need to setup and maintain their own Microsoft® Exchange™ server. Moreover, IT no longer needs to manage Microsoft Office licenses to be installed and reinstalled on each device. Unfortunately, Google Apps doesn’t offer a cloud-based directory service, or more specifically, a way to authenticate LDAP requests with Google Apps credentials.

Strengths and Weaknesses of Google Apps

Google Apps functions as an excellent productivity solution for organizations. While it does have a user directory to manage access to Google Apps and some select web applications, it does not function as a true directory service where it can authenticate, authorize, and manage user access to systems, applications, and networks. The directory portion of Google Apps started as a contact database and has slowly evolved to provide OAuth services to other web applications. For IT admins, Google Apps has become a core part of their infrastructure, but unfortunately, the identities used for Google Apps aren’t federated to other services, including LDAP-based applications.

Extending the Power of GApps with DaaS

JumpCloud® Directory-as-a-Service® extends Google Apps identities to be leveraged throughout the IT infrastructure. JumpCloud’s DaaS provides a True SSO™ solution with Google Apps credentials. Users can login to their devices, on-prem LDAP-based or web SAML-based applications, and WiFi network. This is especially powerful for organizations that are moving more of their infrastructure to the cloud. Now, the core user directory service can be shifted to the cloud and integrated with Google Apps. Users can be automatically provisioned and de-provisioned in Google Apps from the JumpCloud cloud directory.

Unleashing Google Apps LDAP Authentication Capabilities

LDAP-based applications, such as Jira, Confluence, and Docker, are authenticated via Google Apps credentials through the cloud-hosted Directory-as-a-Service platform. IT admins are able to create and manage groups within the Identity-as-a-Service platform, but without the heavy lifting of implementing LDAP. JumpCloud handles the installation, configuration, scaling, security, and availability of the LDAP-as-a-Service platform. IT organizations can simply import their Google Apps users into the cloud user directory and point their LDAP applications to the virtual LDAP service. Users can login to their LDAP applications via their Google Apps credentials.

If you would like to learn more about how you can leverage Google Apps for LDAP authentication, take a look at extending GApps with Directory-as-a-Service. JumpCloud’s LDAP authentication service may be the functionality you need to integrate all of your credentials. Feel free to sign-up for a free account to test the integration and service for yourself.

Rajat Bhargava

Rajat Bhargava is co-founder and CEO of JumpCloud, the first Directory-as-a-Service (DaaS). JumpCloud securely connects and manages employees, their devices and IT applications. An MIT graduate with two decades of experience in industries including cloud, security, networking and IT, Rajat is an eight-time entrepreneur with five exits including two IPOs, three trade sales and three companies still private.

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