2.1 - Connection and disconnection
LDAP is a protocol which requires the user to be connected - and eventually identified - in order to be able to send requests to the server. We maintain this connection potentially forever. What make the LDAP protocol different from, say, the HTTP protocol is that the connection must be issued explicitly. Let's see how we do that.
Opening a connection
We can open a secure or a standard connection.
We can first establish a standard connection, where the data are sent and received in clear text (encoded in ASN.1 BER, but still not encrypted). This example expose the way it's done :
LdapConnection connection = new LdapNetworkConnection( "localhost", 389 );
Here, we just created an unsafe connection locally, using the 389 port. Quite simple...
Although the LDAPS (LDAP over SSL) is now considered as deprecated, many people continue to use it. The big advantage of not using LDAPS is that you don't need to setup two different listening ports (one for LDAP -389- and another one for LDAPS -636- ).
The only difference with the previous example is that we have to tell the connection that it has to use SSL, by passing true as a third parameter (incidentally, passing false set a unsafe connection).
Here is an example
LdapConnection connection = new LdapNetworkConnection( "localhost", 636, true );
h2. Maintaining the connection opened
We keep the connection opened for a limited period of time, defaulting to 30 seconds. This might be not long enough, so one can change this delay by calling the setTimeOut() method :
LdapConnection connection = new LdapNetworkConnection( "localhost", 389 ); connection.setTimeOut( 0 ); ... connection.close();
Note: Setting a value equal or below 0 will keep the connection opened for ever (or a soon as the connection is not explicitly closed).
Closing the connection
Once you don't need to use the connection anymore (remember that hodling a connection keeps a session opened on the server, and a socket opened between the client and the server), then you have to close it. This is done by calling the close() method :
LdapConnection connection = new LdapNetworkConnection( "localhost", 389 ); ... connection.close();