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Producing a web directory with LDAP


Firstly let me say that i'm new to this list and new to LDAP. However i'm looking for a flat file solution (or non-RDBMS) to produce a web directory and am prepared to put in some learning curve in order to be in an appropriate format.

Firstly, could I be looking in the right place with LDAP? Would you have any other suggestions to build something like this?....

The reason why I am looking at LDAP is because SQL tables can't build the hierarchical structure of a directory easily. I think I need a un-relational solution, with greater speed and flexibility.

I'm looking to build a web directory that can sit on one main server with localized replicas in other countries. At the moment I am imagining running this off either Linux or OS X boxes.

I have some relational data that is based on the directory. In some articles online it claims that LDAP can't handle relational data, or that it's simply not tailored for updating data on the fly. Can you suggest ways of handling various relational bits of data, for one example, hit-counters? Or any data that needs to be updated regularly? (None of the data needs to be accurate to the second or is time sensitive)

The content should be more than a few million entries and I need fast and flexible multiple field searching.

Can anyone suggest whether LDAP is firstly capable of the above and secondly the the correct format for holding/searching such information in such quantity?
Can it be easily integrated into other networks/systems?
What is your suggestion for the ideal middle-ware for use with LDAP?
Should I use OpenLDAP Server or use the built in LDAPv3 in OS 10.2?
Know of any examples of LDAP on the web I could look at?
Is the learning curve steep?

Any information would be greatly appreciated,

Many thanks,


-- // Adam de Zoete \\ AtoZ@dnet.co.uk