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Securing LDAP between httpd and Microsoft 2008 R2 Active Directory

Posted on 2013-10-22
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Last Modified: 2013-10-22
I have a linux RHEL 6 webserver we have set up to host multiple websites for our orginization. The server is a virtual machine, and exists on a hosted cloud. We also have, as one of the virtual machines in the cloud, a replicated domain controller with active directory.  One of the websites we host is for employees only, and is secured by a LDAP connection to the active directory server we have in the cloud.

I have this working fine, but I can't figure out how to secure the LDAP connection. Right now its plain text, but I want it to be over SSL or TLS.

What I have done so far is tried exporting a certificate key from the ad server, and I also tried one of our certificates from our local certificate authority. I've placed the crt on the linux machine, and then placed a string in the httpd.conf that points to the crt. I've added an s to ldap:// so it looks like ldaps://, and i've tried it on the 686 port for ssl, and also leaving it on the 389 port. the ports are open from what I can tell using telnet and speaking with our cloud hosting provider (making sure the firewalls are not blocking anything).

SO regular LDAP works fine as it is configured, but I'm missing something about securing it. I'm not familiar with encryption and certificates, and my IT director isn't sure either...and its just the two of us.

Can someone help me figure this all out?

Here is how the httpd.conf looks like:


    AuthType Basic
    AuthName "Secure Employee Portal"
    AuthBasicProvider ldap
    AuthLDAPURL "ldap://adserver.cloudcompany.net/ou=User Accounts,dc=mydomain,dc=local?sAMAccountName?sub?(objectClass=*)"
    AuthLDAPBindDN "CN=webserver ldap,OU=Users (Service Accounts),DC=mydomain,DC=local"
    AuthLDAPBindPassword binduserpassword
    Require valid-user

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Let me know how I can help make this clearer as well. The real bottom line issue here is that I do not know how to set up this LDAP connection so it is secure. I think everything is there for the taking, but all the stuff i find online either doesnt work, or is not related to what I'm trying to do. If you can point me to a clear resource on how to get this going, that would be great. If your familiar with this sort of thing and can talk me through it a little at a time, I would greatly appreciate it. Thank you!
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Question by:dchevalier
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gurutc earned 2000 total points
ID: 39591457
This link has your answer:

http://pvradu.blogspot.com/2011/06/apache-22-ldaps-authentication-in.html

There's cert setup, httpd.conf setup, and virtual hosts setup involved.

Good Luck,

- gurutc
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Author Closing Comment

by:dchevalier
ID: 39591897
I needed to modify this a little because ldap.conf isnt in my /etc directory, but instead exists in the /etc/openldap/ directory. Also, I used the cert that was generated from my domains certificate authority, under client authorization and trusted root certification. These two elements I had to figure out. My LDAP strings in the httpd.conf are a little different then what was shown in the configuration from that link, but it works none the less. Thanks gurutc for sharing that link - made my day.
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Author Comment

by:dchevalier
ID: 39592184
This stopped working about an hour or so after I had proclaimed victory. I'm just updating this in case this solved conclusion was a false positive. I'll keep this updated.

EDIT 1: Start working again when I commented out these:

#LDAPSharedCacheSize 500000

#LDAPCacheEntries 128

#LDAPCacheTTL 60

#LDAPOpCacheEntries 128

#LDAPOpCacheTTL 60

#LDAPConnectionTimeout 10

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