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Authenticating users when they try to access the ldap directory

Sorry for repeating this question once again, but I'm finding it difficult to figure it out.
I need to find out through a user/password system when the user types in the search string (say dc=abc,dc=com) from the client side(say outlook express), whether that user belongs to the ldap directory's list and has typed in the right password.
Can this be done by writing a correctly formed ACL. If  yes, will be a userPassword attribute do for a given cn....
I don't know how to go about this.
Plssss help
Tks & Regds,