A communication protocol used to transport and format messages in order to access information in an X.500-like directory. A directory able to be accessed with LDAP is known as an LDAP directory. The LDAP Version 3 (LDAPv3) protocol has become the standard used by large firms to access user and resource directory data.
The shortcoming of LDAPv3 is its lack of access control and back-end enterprise integration extensions (such as replication) that are widely adopted and necessary for integrating disparate directories and for constructing a distributed directory service. Today within most enterprises, meta-directories tend to resolve the issue. Endeavors are underway to address shortcomings of LDAP, ironically by reintroducing features that were stripped out in the transition of the more complex X.500 standard to make it more “lightweight.”
See Also: Protocol.