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LDAP Administration Guide
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1.7. What is the difference between LDAPv2 and LDAPv3?

LDAPv3 was developed in the late 1990's to replace LDAPv2. LDAPv3 adds the following features to LDAP:

  • Strong authentication and data security services via SASL
  • Certificate authentication and data security services via TLS (SSL)
  • Internationalization through the use of Unicode
  • Referrals and Continuations
  • Schema Discovery
  • Extensibility (controls, extended operations, and more)

LDAPv2 is historic (RFC3494). As most so-called LDAPv2 implementations (including slapd(8)) do not conform to the LDAPv2 technical specification, interoperability amongst implementations claiming LDAPv2 support is limited. As LDAPv2 differs significantly from LDAPv3, deploying both LDAPv2 and LDAPv3 simultaneously is quite problematic. LDAPv2 should be avoided. LDAPv2 is disabled by default.

LDAP Administration Guide
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  Published under the terms of the OpenLDAP Public License Design by Interspire