Serverless Directory

Written by Zach DeMeyer on October 14, 2018

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Serverless. It’s a word that’s met with a mix of joy and caution. Some believe serverless computing is the way of the future, a godsend of the modern era. Others, however, view serverless computing as just another way to offer up more sensitive data to be compromised by bad actors. Either way, the possibility of a serverless directory for IT admins is intriguing, and it’s closer than you think.

What Does Serverless Even Mean?

“But Zach,” you may ask, “don’t all softwares have to be on a server to even run?” Well, while the term “serverless” implies not having a server, it really means not having a server on-prem. “So, it’s not really serverless then.” Correct. Although software is ultimately run on a server somewhere (or perhaps more accurately, code is executed by a processor somewhere), by being “serverless,” IT organizations don’t need to implement and manage the servers themselves.

Creating a serverless environment makes the lives and work of IT admins considerably easier.  With a serverless approach, the heavy lifting of creating an on-prem server instance and the leg work of managing infrastructure can be shifted to a provider. This approach has taken hold in a number of areas in IT, but one that is still novel to the industry is the idea of a serverless directory.

Serverless Identity and Access Management?

The identity management market has largely been an on-prem category, which has been especially true for the directory/identity provider (IdP). This is largely due to the fact that the traditional identity provider of choice, Microsoft® Active Directory® (AD), has been based solely on-prem for almost two decades now. While useful back in the day, today’s IT world is increasingly cloud-based. Add-ons and patches to the identity provider, such as web application single sign-on (SSO), have helped to bridge the gap to the cloud, but the core directory has yet to actually make the switch.

Shifting to a cloud directory is an idea that comes with some trepidation. After all, why would you want to take something that’s been so deeply rooted on-prem and completely upheave it? Well, the traditional identity provider is also deeply rooted in the Windows® OS. Given the increasing amount of heterogeneous system environments with the rise of Mac® and Linux® machines, a non-affiliated, cloud-based directory seems better apt to manage the endpoints of today’s workforce.

A Serverless Directory for All

JumpCloud directory-as-a-service

As stated earlier, while the idea of a serverless directory seems out there, it’s actually much closer than you think. There is a cloud identity provider on the market today that outsources directory implementation and management, makes life easier for IT admins, and, ultimately, end users can Make Work Happen™. This solution is called JumpCloud® Directory-as-a-Service®.

With JumpCloud, the heavy lifting of a directory service is lifted off on-prem servers and offloaded to the cloud. Directory-as-a-Service securely connects centralized user identities to systems, applications, files, and networks, regardless of their location, protocol, provider, or platform. This includes infrastructure through AWS®, productivity via G Suite™ or Office 365™, Samba NAS servers, and much more.

To learn more about a serverless directory for your organization, consider contacting us today. Schedule a demo to see JumpCloud Directory-as-a-Service in action, or try JumpCloud absolutely free. Your first ten users are included to get you started.

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