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Setting up a server in a DMZ, AD authentication?

Posted on 2014-03-19
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Last Modified: 2014-05-06
Hello there,

I am pondering a design question.  I want to set up an FTP server in my DMZ.  In the past, I would throw up a server and put FTP on it, and setup local users or users to the FTP service and let that all work like that.

One of the requirements this time around is to have Active Directory authentication.  This is where I start to wonder.

In some configurations, I would just NAT an address thru the firewall, ports 20 and 21, to the actual server, and then leave it on the production network, connected as a server in AD.  I know that opens up some vulnerabilities, but it does solve my authentication problem.

So, if I put it in the DMZ, what do I need to have open for that server to be active in Active Directory?  Is this a good design decision?

TIA

Tom
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Question by:thafemann
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LVL 17

Expert Comment

by:James H
ID: 39939360
Just create an ACL and only allow the ports required for AD to your DC.


http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd772723(ws.10).aspx
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Expert Comment

by:itguy565
ID: 39939366
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Author Comment

by:thafemann
ID: 39939687
Okay, got it, it is possible.

Now riddle me this, is it worth it?  Now, before you respond with the what I say to my end users, "It depends", I know that.  :)

This server is to be an FTP server.  I am leaning toward using either Serv-u or CrushFTP.  While the server does not necessarily need to be a part of Active Directory, user authentication to the FTP server must use Active directory.   There has even been talk of using RSA tokens for authentication.

Both of these FTP servers do LDAP authentication from Active Directory, which is really the driving force.  I am thinking that maybe I should just leave the server in Workgroup mode, and set LDAP authentication thru the firewall.

I guess I am looking for best practice with putting a server in the DMZ.
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LVL 11

Accepted Solution

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itguy565 earned 300 total points
ID: 39939712
I am thinking that maybe I should just leave the server in Workgroup mode, and set LDAP authentication thru the firewall.

This would be your best option because it makes it more difficult for someone to hack the server/network and minimize risk if the local account that is logged on doesn't have privileges to other network resources.

I would personally use serv-u because solarwinds has been around for a very long time and it is a company I trust.
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