Install and Configure a Light Weight LDAP Directory for SharePoint

Written By: Manoj V -- 7/21/2011 -- join -- contribute -- (38) comments -- printer friendly version

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Categories: Configurations, Infrastructure, MOSS 2007, System Administration, WSS3

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Active Directory (AD) is an obvious choice for a user information store in Microsoft server environments. But if the requirement is to have an isolated light weight user store, Active Directory would be overkill or may not be appropriate.


The Microsoft solution would be Active Directory Application Mode (ADAM) or a SQL Server database. In a Windows Server 2003 environment, we have an ADAM user store and in Windows Server 2008 we have Active Directory Lightweight Directory Services (AD LDS). ADAM is a light weight LDAP directory that offers basic LDAP functions with a subset of Active Directory functionality. ADAM is the ideal solution in all the scenarios discussed above.

This article will guide us through installing and configuring ADAM on a Windows 2003 Server.

1. Installing ADAM

ADAM can be installed on Windows XP or Windows Server 2003 server OS.

a. To install ADAM, log on as an administrator, click Start -> Control Panel -> click Add or Remove Programs -> Add/Remove Windows Components.

b. Select the check box next to Active Directory Services, and then click Details.

c. Select the check box next to Active Directory Application Mode (ADAM) - click OK - click Next - click Finish. The message "You have successfully completed the Windows Component Wizard" appears, click Finish.

ADAM can also be installed using the installer from Microsoft which is available for download here.

Now we have enabled ADAM on our server. The next step is to create and configure the ADAM instance.

2. Create an ADAM Instance

a. We create an ADAM instance using Active Directory Application Mode Setup Wizard. To start the wizard click Start, point to All Programs, point to ADAM, and then click Create an ADAM instance. It looks similar to the below image:

Active Directory Application Mode Setup Wizard

b. Click Next on the Welcome Page and it takes us to the Setup Options page. Select the option Unique Instance because we are installing ADAM for first time on this server. Click Next.

Setup options page

c. In the next screen provide an instance name for this instance, click Next, configure port and click Next to move on to the Application Directory Partition screen.

Set Ports

d. Select the option "Yes, create an application directory partition" and key in a name for the partition and click Next. In the next screen provide the location to store ADAM Data and log files. The program files and administration tools would be installed in the ADAM folder in Windows installation directory.

Application Directory Partition

e. In the next screen select the service account to use with the ADAM instance. Default value here is the Network Service account and we could stick to this. In the next page we select a service or group which will be the default administrator for this ADAM instance. Lets keep the option currently logged in user and proceed to next screen, Import LDIF files.

f. The LDIF files are required so that we can create the directory schema. We will select and add MS-InetOrgPerson.LDF, MS-User.LDF, and MS-UserProxy.LDF. Click Next and click Finish to complete the setup process.

Import LDIF Files

Import LDIF Files

NOTE: If there are any error messages check the "adamsetup.log" and "adamsetup_loader.log" in the "Windows\Debug" folder

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