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Re: Building an LDAP database "for dummies"

Have you ever used the Domain Name System? (Yes, obviously.) Do you understand the notion of a "hierarchical namespace"? Surely you've already been heavily exposed to it, the filesystem on the computer you're typing on is most likely hierarchical as well. LDAP/X.500 is no different, these are all directories of one form or another and they all store data in a similar fashion.

In DNS there are "TLDs" (Top Level Domains) - .com, .edu, .org, .us, etc... Other subdomains are created underneath these domains, e.g. openldap.org. There can be arbitrarily many subdomains nested in this fashion, e.g. "room8.level6.LosAngeles.ca.MyCompany.com" and there can be various other entries inside a subdomain e.g. "printer1.room8.level6.LosAngeles.ca.MyCompany.com", printer2..., and so on.

In creating any hierarchical tree, you have to start at the root node and work your way down. You can't create "MyCompany.com" if ".com" doesn't exist yet. You can't create "CA.MyCompany.com" until "MyCompany.com" has been created.

Just like in a filesystem directory - to create /usr/local/lib/gcc you first have to make sure that /usr, /usr/local, and /usr/local/lib exist first, in that order.

So - "What is this tree?" - the tree is the structure you design to contain the data you're going to store. Schema is just a description of what kinds of data will be recognized by the server, but it doesn't say anything about the location of the data. The tree structure gives you the location.

This should probably be added here : http://www.openldap.org/faq/data/cache/595.html

May I?