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OpenLDAP, Kerberos, Samba, PAM, How Do They Work Together?

Dear list members,

I hope amateur questions could be tolerated. I would make it
professional if I could. I'm a newbie to OpenLDAP and probably even
Linux, but I have to take care of an office network (Linux servers with
Linux and PC workstations) that features email server, domain control,
file/printer sharing, user account management, web servers and so forth,
on my own without anyone's help.

Yesterday morning the power went down and so did our servers. After I
turned the servers back on, the account information system was no longer
working. Users weren't able to login with their credentials anymore,
even the root. What I did was I logged in the server (the Samba PDC,
LDAP server, Kerberos server, domain controller, email server) with
single mode, reseted the root password, and added accounts for other
individual users on the server. I know it was a bad idea. Although I got
some things working (emails, file/printer sharing), but there are still
other problems (PHP ldap_bind() from web servers fails, domain user
accounts and profiles fail to load correctly).

I know there is a centralized mechanism that handles user accounts with
the help of OpenLDAP, Kerberos, Samba, BerkeleyDB (and possibly other
things), but I don't have a clue of how they work together. I've been
trying to learn from docs and books for a long time before this power
issue, but not very successful.

My greatest problem is that I don't know how these things are working
together on my system. I believe I also lack some fundamental system
knowledge. I've been reading the docs available, but they're so abstract
to me and none of them seems to match our system configuration.

I'm hoping that I can get some help from here. Maybe some one can give
me some suggestions on how to troubleshoot in such a scenario as a
newbie, or an entry point that I can follow in order to explore the
system. I believe you can tell that I'm totally confused here without
being able to give much useful information about the problem and the
system. I'm sorry for my ignorance, but I really tried to deal with it
myself. If this thread turns out to be annoying or ridiculous, please
ignore, and I do apologize.

However, while I'm still struggling on the problem, if anyone could
help, I would really appreciate it. Thank you so much.