Petter Reinholdtsen

Kerberos for Debian Edu/Squeeze?
14th April 2010

Yesterdays NUUG presentation about Kerberos was inspiring, and reminded me about the need to start using Kerberos in Skolelinux. Setting up a Kerberos server seem to be straight forward, and if we get this in place a long time before the Squeeze version of Debian freezes, we have a chance to migrate Skolelinux away from NFSv3 for the home directories, and over to an architecture where the infrastructure do not have to trust IP addresses and machines, and instead can trust users and cryptographic keys instead.

A challenge will be integration and administration. Is there a Kerberos implementation for Debian where one can control the administration access in Kerberos using LDAP groups? With it, the school administration will have to maintain access control using flat files on the main server, which give a huge potential for errors.

A related question I would like to know is how well Kerberos and pam-ccreds (offline password check) work together. Anyone know?

Next step will be to use Kerberos for access control in Lwat and Nagios. I have no idea how much work that will be to implement. We would also need to document how to integrate with Windows AD, as such shared network will require two Kerberos realms that need to cooperate to work properly.

I believe a good start would be to start using Kerberos on the machines, and this way get ourselves experience with configuration and integration. A natural starting point would be setting up as the Kerberos server, and migrate the rest of the machines from PAM via LDAP to PAM via Kerberos one at the time.

If you would like to contribute to get this working in Skolelinux, I recommend you to see the video recording from yesterdays NUUG presentation, and start using Kerberos at home. The video show show up in a few days.

Tags: debian edu, english, nuug.

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