I have been exploring the possibility of using the ApacheDS Kerberos implementation in another application in which the backing store would not be an LDAP server.  There seem to be a number of areas in which the Kerberos modules are entangled with the LDAP code.  One area of particular note is Kerberos' use of the ASN1 packages in "shared-ldap".  As a test I created a "shared-asn1" module containing all the ASN1 packages but none of the LDAP packages.  The module satisfied all of Kerberos' needs and the jar file was only 81Kb whereas the shared-ldap jar file is over 1500 Kb.  So I'm asking the developer's opinion regarding separating the ASN1 packages from shared-ldap and created a "shared-asn1" module.  The relatively small size of such a module wouldn't seem to be a concern as there are other modules, such as dsml-engine at only 14.5 Kb.  I assume that the ASN1 packages were originally created for the LDAP message parsing but they clearly have application in non-LDAP protocols as evidenced by their use in the Kerberos implementation.

I will be investigating the other LDAP code dependencies in the Kerberos code as well.


On another topic...  I raised the question some weeks ago about interest in a RADIUS implementation.  Since then I have written one using Mina 2.0 and modelled loosely on ApacheDS Kerberos.  It was carefully crafted to be independent of the information store implementation by including definitions of a few Interfaces to be implemented by the instantiating framework.  I have created implementations of the interfaces that use a SQL DB as the store and hope to have it deployed in a real-world environment for intial testing in the next few weeks.

Another pluggable aspect to the design is the use of request "Evaluators" strung together using a "commons-chain" framework.  I have created request evaluators for PAP, CHAP, and MS-CHAP authentication requests (all based on the availability of the users' clear-text password, Proxy forwarding to another RADIUS server based on the domain name in the User-Name attribute of the request, and Accounting message processing.  I've also begun creating the framework needed to handle EAP requests but it isn't complete.  Also the Accounting evaluator currently only accepts or rejects messages based on whether it can find the specified user in the data store, but always discards the message content.  Clearly more is needed here.

I am planning to donate this RADIUS implementation to the Apache Directory project if you're interested in incorporating it.  Obviously an implementation of the data store interfaces which uses the ADS LDAP is required in order for it to be useable within Apache Directory.  Unfortunately I have no experience creating applications which make extensive use of an LDAP store.  Some basic information about each NAS (network access server) which are the "clients" of a RADIUS server is needed.  Additionally, attributes which are to be incorporated into server responses need to be associated with individual users, groups of users, groups of NAS's, etc.  Since I've also never been a RADIUS server administrator, my familiarity with configuration management is limited to what I've read in the descriptions of other servers such as FreeRADIUS and Microsoft IAS.  It is my understanding that making the decision-making as to what attributes to included in a response is generally based on testing of the attributes included in the request.  I have classes to support a basic implementation of this idea though I'm not clear it is sufficient for all uses.

Thoughts?  Thanks,
Richard Feezel


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