[ldapdata] LDAP Newsletter 10-7-2004 (LDAP Explorer Tool)

  • From: Hallett German <hrgerman@xxxxxxx>
  • To: ldapdata@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 07 Oct 2004 21:06:37 -0400

Hallett German
81 Sachem Drive
Middletown, CT

-- Attached file included as plaintext by Ecartis --

Topics:  LDAP Browser Interviews:
Introduction and LDAP Explorer Tool

Issue Contents:

* LDAP Browser Interviews: Introduction
* LDAP Browser Interviews: Laurent Ulrich & Bertrand
  Lorentz -- LDAP Explorer Tool
* LDAP News: New LDAP Editor/Browser
* Articles and Comments Welcome
This newsletter is sponsored by Alessea Consulting.

Business/IT Services for small and medium businesses.
Specializing in network identity, project management, and
business development.

Visit us and read more about the Alessea difference.

URL: http://www.alessea.com
RSS: http://www.alessea.com/feed.xml
Blog: http://alessea.com/v-web/b2/
By Hallett German

Topic: LDAP Browser: Interviews

Recently, your newsletter staff submitted a series of
questions to all known MS-Windows developers of LDAP Browser
software. (Cygsoft,and CodeMerc were unable to be reached.
We would love to include you as well!)These questions
concerned product origin, development process, next product
release, and more. Answers are printed here without revision
except for minor changes. A few editors' notes may be added
for clarification.

You can find the complete list of questions here:

Topic: LDAP Browser Interviews:
Laurent Ulrich & Bertrand Lorentz --
LDAP Explorer is a popular LDAP open-source browser that
runs on Windows and Linux. It can be found at
http://ldaptool.sourceforge.net/. Unless
otherwise stated, the comments below are from Laurent

Q1. Why did you decide to create "yet" another LDAP
directory browser when so many already exist?

A.  At the time I began to write LDAP Explorer Tool, there
was only one free good LDAP client for windows (LDAP
Browser) but I needed some features that it didn't have. I
mainly needed multi-valued entries editing capabilities,
import/export of binary values. I needed to have a tool that
displayed the schema of the directory, and which was able to
export it in text format.
Another aspect was that LDAP Browser is written in Java
and the application that I was working on was written in
C++, so I learnt much about LDAP APIs while writing the
LDAP Explorer.

Q2. What is your process for deciding which features to
include in future releases of your browser?
Q3.How are these future release features captured? (e.g.
User suggestions, employee input, bug tracking software)

A. We are only two developers on LDAP Explorer Tool and
most of the future features are the one we needed and the
one we think could be useful. We got a few features requests
from users, and  those that aren't implemented are listed
in the TODO file.

Q4a. Against what "checklist" did you use to see if your
browser was LDAP-standard compliant? How do you track
changes in the LDAP standard?  How much time does your
company spend doing this?

A.  LDAP Explorer Tool is tested with three LDAP Servers:
Open LDAP, Novell Directory Server and Sun iPlanet. This is
a good means to test the compliance of LDAP Explorer Tool
against the LDAP standard. As LDAP Explorer Tool is an
'individual' project, I don't spent much time on it, and
thus I can't track changes in LDAP standard.

Q5.  Do you plan to continue upgrading the product for the
near future?

A. I can see that I don't have enough time to frequently
upgrade the product. I think I am going to stop after the
next release.

Bertrand Lorentz: I haven't had much time to work on LDAP
Explorer Tool. If I can find some free time, I might
implement some of the stuff listed in the TODO file.
And contributions are always welcomed !

Q6.  What are some of the features to be included in the
next major release?

A. There are some important features that are not well
implemented like LDIF import/export or LDAP searches. I
would like to include them in the future release but this
takes much time ...

Q7. What lesser-known LDAP browser feature would your
users might find helpful?

A. Sorry, I have no idea.

Q8. Do you plan to add an API so users can customize the
product? If you have/had an API, what types of things
do/might customers use it for?

A.  At the beginning it was my idea, but I decided that LDAP
Explorer Tool should just keep as simple as possible.

Q9.  Which LDAP Directory Servers have
you tested against?

A.  As I wrote it before the three LDAP servers are:
OpenLDAP, iPlanet and Novell's NDS.

Q10.  Describe your testing process(e.g. software used,
process, tracking, etc)

A.  Ooops, sorry I have no testing process ... except
using the product.

Q10a. Do you use it frequently ? For what sorts of things?

A. I did use it a long time during the project it was
created for, to verify that the application did what it
should. Now it's only in a testing purpose that I use
LDAP Explorer Tool

Bertrand Lorentz: Well, users are the best testers ;) We use
the features offered by SourceForge for bug tracking, patch
management, etc.(http://sourceforge.net/projects/ldaptool/)

Q11.  What are some of the extremes that you have tested for
(longest search, etc)

A.  LDAP Explorer Tool was created to browse a directory on
a project containing a huge number of entries. The project
was about an IP Telephony platform based on H.323. The
purpose of the application was to add some services
over the basic capabilities of H.323 (Enterprise number
plans, VoiceMail, IVR, Call forwarding, etc... ). All the
data about number plans, services, users and H.323
terminal were stored in an LDAP database with
specific object classes. A very important aspect of
the application was that it should be able to handle
a big number of calls per day. The
Novell LDAP database we used responded to that aspect, as
well as an Oracle database would had ;o)

12.  Was there a question that you wished that was asked?
What was the answer that you would had given?

A. Why did you choose to develop an open-source project?
I decided to make  LDAP Explorer Tool open-source
because I hoped that some people would be interested to
develop on it, and perhaps to take my role in
the project.

Topics: LDAP News:  New LDAP Editor/Browser Appears
This issue first appeared in our blog.

There is a new LDAP Browser and Editor available.
This can be found at http://www.ldapviewer.com. It is
called Identity Editor ($99 for now) and Identity Viewer
(free). Expect a formal review in a future issue.

Topic: Articles and Comments Welcome

I welcome 100-800 word articles for inclusion in future
issues. Vendors and LDAP data administrators are
particularly welcome. Of course, you receive full credit and
ownership of your article. Thanks in advance for your help.

Please feel free to comment on how useful it was and what
you would like to see in the future.
Contact me at hallett.german@xxxxxxxxxxxx
About Hal German

Hallett German has 20 years experience in a variety of
IT positions and in implementing stable infrastructures.
This includes directories/messaging architecture,
desktop support, and IT management. Hal is the founder
of the Northeast SAS Users Group and former President
of the REXX Language Association. He is the author of
three books on scripting languages. Periodically, he
writes articles on various business and
IT topics.

Contacting Hal German/Past Issues

Mail: hallett.german@xxxxxxxxxxx

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