By Ryan Squires Posted October 24, 2018
Given how difficult it can be to implement LDAP, a serverless LDAP option would be most welcome. Conceptually, the idea exists as such: an LDAP directory instance is created and hosted in the cloud by a third party. Now, instead of IT admins or DevOps engineers having to purchase, setup, and configure an entire LDAP server from scratch, they could simply point their web applications to a cloud LDAP server. Gone would be hassle with servers, software, management, maintenance, security, and availability among other issues. IT admins could simply turn on the service, reap its benefits, and use whatever they need. Because it would be delivered as a service, it would also be highly scalable, so growing companies could support new employees and only pay for what they use. Serverless LDAP allows these possibilities and more.
Where Did LDAP Come From?
In IT parlance, LDAP has been around forever. It was created in the early 1990s by our friend and advisor Tim Howes and his colleagues at the University of Michigan. It worked so well that it ended up spawning two major identity providers including OpenLDAP™, which is most popular in the open source realm, and Microsoft® Active Directory®, the directory service/identity provider most utilized in commercial settings. Both represent on-prem implementations that require a lot of setup, especially in the case of OpenLDAP, whose open source nature provides it with incredible flexibility but also difficulty with regard to technical support and implementation. And because OpenLDAP focuses solely on LDAP-based resources, a lot of the newer web-based applications can’t be accessed via LDAP. So, having an entire server in your closet dedicated to just LDAP applications certainly seems like overkill.
So, Does Serverless LDAP Even Exist?
Luckily, such a solution does exist for IT admins who have long pined for serverless LDAP utilization and its maintenance-free benefits. It’s called JumpCloud® Directory-as-a-Service®. This cloud LDAP solution requires zero on-prem software or hardware, and JumpCloud takes care of the maintenance, configuration, and security of the cloud instance. IT organizations simply focus on empowering their end users to leverage the best LDAP based resources, like Jira® and MySQL™, while gaining more time to explore new initiatives that will improve the business.
However, LDAP-as-a-Service is just one facet of an entire cloud identity management platform that includes other capabilities such as comprehensive user and system management for virtually all IT resources. With one identity management solution, IT admins gain control over Windows®, Mac® and Linux® systems, RADIUS, and SAML-based resources, SSH keys, and G Suite™ and Office 365™ productivity platforms. While IT benefits from widespread visibility, users are provided with a single identity that grants the frictionless access to all of their technical applications and most other IT resources regardless of platform, protocol, provider, or location. Additionally, IT admins can utilize security capabilities such as multi-factor authentication, password complexity management, policies, event logging, and more to fortify their IT environment. In short, while one aspect of this solution is LDAP-as-a-Service, it is a complete identity management platform that is at the center of making work happen for everyone in an organization
Learn More About LDAP-as-a-Service
Let us show you how serverless LDAP can improve operational efficiency, increase cost effectiveness, and encourage innovation by giving us a shout. Now that you’re aware of a serverless LDAP solution, feel free to sign up for a free account today. It’s free and you can manage up to 10 users. After you’ve signed up, check out our LDAP Knowledge Base page and start utilizing a hosted LDAP solution today.