Chapter 2. File Locations Overview
Red Hat Directory Server is compatible with the Filesystem Hierarchy Standards (FHS). For further information on the FHS, see http://refspecs.linuxfoundation.org/fhs.shtml.
2.1. Directory Server Instance-independent Files and Directories
The following are the Directory Server’s instance-independent default file and directory locations:
Systemd unit files
2.2. Directory Server Instance-specific Files and Directories
To separate multiple instances running on the same host, certain files and directories contain the name of the instance. You set the instance name during the Directory Server setup. By default, this is the host name without domain name. For example, if your fully-qualified domain name is
server.example.com, the default instance name is
The following are the Directory Server’s instance-specific default file and directory locations:
Certificate and key databases
Systemd unit files
2.2.1. Configuration Files
Each Directory Server instance stores its configuration files in the
The configuration information for Red Hat Directory Server is stored as LDAP entries within the directory itself. Therefore, changes to the server configuration must be implemented through the use of the server itself rather than by simply editing configuration files. The principal advantage of this method of configuration storage is that it allows a directory administrator to reconfigure the server using LDAP while it is still running, thus avoiding the need to shut the server down for most configuration changes.
22.214.171.124. Overview of the Directory Server Configuration
When the Directory Server is set up, its default configuration is stored as a series of LDAP entries within the directory, under the subtree
cn=config. When the server is started, the contents of the
cn=config subtree are read from a file (
dse.ldif) in LDIF format. This
dse.ldif file contains all of the server configuration information. The latest version of this file is called
dse.ldif, the version prior to the last modification is called
dse.ldif.bak, and the latest file with which the server successfully started is called
Many of the features of the Directory Server are designed as discrete modules that plug into the core server. The details of the internal configuration for each plug-in are contained in separate entries under
cn=plugins,cn=config. For example, the configuration of the Telephone Syntax Plug-in is contained in this entry:
Similarly, database-specific configuration is stored under
cn=ldbm database,cn=plugins,cn=config for local databases and
cn=chaining database,cn=plugins,cn=config for database links.
The following diagram illustrates how the configuration data fits within the
cn=config directory information tree.
Figure 2.1. Directory Information Tree Showing Configuration Data
126.96.36.199.1. LDIF and Schema Configuration Files
The Directory Server configuration data are stored in LDIF files in the
/etc/dirsrv/slapd-instance directory. Thus, if a server identifier is
phonebook, then for a Directory Server, the configuration LDIF files are all stored under
This directory also contains other server instance-specific configuration files.
Schema configuration is also stored in LDIF format, and these files are located in the
The following table lists all of the configuration files that are supplied with the Directory Server, including those for the schema of other compatible servers. Each file is preceded by a number which indicates the order in which they should be loaded (in ascending numerical and then alphabetical order).
Table 2.1. Directory Server LDIF Configuration Files
Contains front-end Directory Specific Entries created by the directory at server startup. These include the Root DSE (
Contains only those schema definitions necessary for starting the server with the bare minimum feature set (no user schema, no schema for any non-core features). The rest of the schema used by users, features, and applications is found in
Contains LDAPv3 standard operational schema, such as
Schema from RFC 2247 and related pilot schema, from "Using Domains in LDAP/X500 Distinguished Names."
Schema from RFC 2927, "MIME Directory Profile for LDAP Schema." Contains the
Legacy. Schema for instant messaging presence (online) information; the file lists the default object classes with the allowed attributes that must be added to a user’s entry in order for instant-messaging presence information to be available for that user.
Schema from RFC 2307, "An Approach for Using LDAP as a Network Information Service." This may be superseded by
Contains new schema elements and the Nortel subscriber interoperability specification. Also contains the
Schema from RFC 2713, "Schema for Representing Java® Objects in an LDAP Directory."
Contains pilot directory schema from RFC 1274, which is no longer recommended for new deployments. Future RFCs which succeed RFC 1274 may deprecate some or all of
Schema that contains objects classes and attributes common to the Directory Server Console framework.
Schema used by Red Hat Administration Server.
Schema for Red Hat Certificate Management System.
Contains additional configuration schema used by Directory Server 4.12 and earlier versions of the directory, which is no longer applicable to current releases of Directory Server. This schema is required for replicating between Directory Server 4.12 and current releases.
Schema used by Netscape Messaging Server to define mail users and mail groups.
Schema for servers' value item attributes.
Schema for Netscape Web Server.
Reserved for future use.
User-defined schema maintained by Directory Server replication consumers which contains the attributes and object classes from the suppliers.
188.8.131.52.2. How the Server Configuration Is Organized
dse.ldif file contains all configuration information including directory-specific entries created by the directory at server startup, such as entries related to the database. The file includes the root Directory Server entry (or DSE, named by
"") and the contents of
When the server generates the
dse.ldif file, it lists the entries in hierarchical order in the order that the entries appear in the directory under
cn=config, which is usually the same order in which an LDAP search of subtree scope for base
cn=config returns the entries.
dse.ldif also contains the
cn=monitor entry, which is mostly read-only, but can have ACIs set on it.
dse.ldif file does not contain every attribute in
cn=config. If the attribute has not been set by the administrator and has a default value, the server will not write it to
dse.ldif. To see every attribute in
Within a configuration entry, each attribute is represented as an attribute name. The value of the attribute corresponds to the attribute’s configuration.
The following code sample is an example of part of the
dse.ldif file for a Directory Server. The example shows, among other things, that schema checking has been enabled; this is represented by the attribute
nsslapd-schemacheck, which takes the value
dn: cn=config objectclass: top objectclass: extensibleObject objectclass: nsslapdConfig nsslapd-accesslog-logging-enabled: on nsslapd-enquote-sup-oc: off nsslapd-localhost: phonebook.example.com nsslapd-schemacheck: on nsslapd-port: 389 nsslapd-localuser: dirsrv ...
Configuration of Plug-in Functionality
The configuration for each part of Directory Server plug-in functionality has its own separate entry and set of attributes under the subtree
cn=plugins,cn=config. The following code sample is an example of the configuration entry for an example plug-in, the Telephone Syntax plug-in.
dn: cn=Telephone Syntax,cn=plugins,cn=config objectclass: top objectclass: nsSlapdPlugin objectclass: extensibleObject cn: Telephone Syntax nsslapd-pluginType: syntax nsslapd-pluginEnabled: on
Some of these attributes are common to all plug-ins, and some may be particular to a specific plug-in. Check which attributes are currently being used by a given plug-in by performing an
ldapsearch on the
For a list of plug-ins supported by Directory Server, general plug-in configuration information, the plug-in configuration attribute reference, and a list of plug-ins requiring restart for configuration changes, see Chapter 4, Plug-in Implemented Server Functionality Reference.
Configuration of Databases
cn=UserRoot subtree under the database plug-in entry contain configuration data for the databases containing the default suffix created during setup.
These entries and their children have many attributes used to configure different database settings, like the cache sizes, the paths to the index files and transaction logs, entries and attributes for monitoring and statistics; and database indexes.
Configuration of Indexes
Configuration information for indexing is stored as entries in the Directory Server under the following information-tree nodes:
cn=default indexes,cn=config,cn=ldbm database,cn=plugins,cn=config
For more information about indexes in general, see the Red Hat Directory Server Administration Guide. For information about the index configuration attributes, see Section 4.4.1, “Database Attributes under cn=config,cn=ldbm database,cn=plugins,cn=config”.
184.108.40.206. Accessing and Modifying Server Configuration
This section discusses access control for configuration entries and describes the various ways in which the server configuration can be viewed and modified. It also covers restrictions to the kinds of modification that can be made and discusses attributes that require the server to be restarted for changes to take effect.
220.127.116.11.1. Access Control for Configuration Entries
When the Directory Server is installed, a default set of access control instructions (ACIs) is implemented for all entries under
cn=config. The following code sample is an example of these default ACIs.
aci: (targetattr = "*")(version 3.0; acl "Local Directory Administrators Group"; allow (all) groupdn = "ldap:///ou=Directory Administrators,dc=example,dc=com";)
These default ACIs allow all LDAP operations to be carried out on all configuration attributes by the following users:
- Members of the Configuration Administrators group.
The user acting as the administrator, the
adminaccount that was configured at setup. By default, this is the same user account which is logged into the Console.
- Members of local Directory Administrators group.
The SIE (Server Instance Entry) group, usually assigned using the
Set Access Permissionsprocess the main console.
For more information on access control, see the Red Hat Directory Server Administration Guide.
18.104.22.168.2. Changing Configuration Attributes
Server attributes can be viewed and changed in one of three ways: through the Directory Server Console, by performing
ldapmodify commands, or by manually editing the
Before editing the
dse.ldif file, the server must be stopped; otherwise, the changes are lost. Editing the
dse.ldif file is recommended only for changes to attributes which cannot be altered dynamically. See Configuration Changes Requiring Server Restart for further information.
The following sections describe how to modify entries using LDAP (both by using Directory Server Console and by using the command line), the restrictions that apply to modifying entries, the restrictions that apply to modifying attributes, and the configuration changes requiring restart.
Modifying Configuration Entries Using LDAP
The configuration entries in the directory can be searched and modified using LDAP either using the Directory Server Console or by performing
ldapmodify operations in the same way as other directory entries. The advantage of using LDAP to modify entries is changes can be made while the server is running.
For further information, see the "Creating Directory Entries" chapter in the Red Hat Directory Server Administration Guide. However, certain changes do require the server to be restarted before they are taken into account. See Configuration Changes Requiring Server Restart for further information.
As with any set of configuration files, care should be taken when changing or deleting nodes in the
cn=config subtree as this risks affecting Directory Server functionality.
The entire configuration, including attributes that always take default values, can be viewed by performing an
ldapsearch operation on the
# ldapsearch -D "cn=Directory Manager" -W -p 389 -h server.example.com -b "cn=config" -s sub -x "(objectclass=*)"
bindDN is the DN chosen for the Directory Manager when the server was installed (
cn=Directory Managerby default).
- password is the password chosen for the Directory Manager.
To disable a plug-in, use
ldapmodify to edit the
# ldapmodify -D "cn=Directory Manager" -W -p 389 -h server.example.com -x dn: cn=Telephone Syntax,cn=plugins,cn=config changetype: modify replace: nsslapd-pluginEnabled nsslapd-pluginEnabled: off
Restrictions to Modifying Configuration Entries and Attributes
Certain restrictions apply when modifying server entries and attributes:
cn=monitorentry and its child entries are read-only and cannot be modified, except to manage ACIs.
If an attribute is added to
cn=config, the server ignores it.
- If an invalid value is entered for an attribute, the server ignores it.
ldapdeleteis used for deleting an entire entry, use
ldapmodifyto remove an attribute from an entry.
Configuration Changes Requiring Server Restart
Some configuration attributes cannot be altered while the server is running. In these cases, for the changes to take effect, the server needs to be shut down and restarted. The modifications should be made either through the Directory Server Console or by manually editing the
dse.ldif file. Some of the attributes that require a server restart for any changes to take effect are listed below. This list is not exhaustive; to see a complete list, run
ldapsearch and search for the
nsslapd-requiresrestart attribute. For example:
# ldapsearch -D "cn=Directory Manager" -W -p 389 -h server.example.com -b "cn=config" -s sub -x "(objectclass=*)" | grep nsslapd-requiresrestart
| || |
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[a] Although this attribute requires a restart, it is not returned in the search.
Deleting Configuration Attributes
All core configuration attributes are present, even if they are not written in the
/etc/dirsrv/slapd-instance-name/dse.ldif file, because they all have default values used by the server.
For details about deleting core configuration attributes and a list of attributes that cannot be deleted, see the corresponding section in the Red Hat Directory Server Administration Guide.
2.2.2. Database Files
Each Directory Server instance contains the
/var/lib/dirsrv/slapd-instance/db directory for storing all of the database files. The following is a sample listing of the
/var/lib/dirsrv/slapd-instance/db directory contents.
Example 2.1. Database Directory Contents
db.001 db.002 __db.003 DBVERSION log.0000000001 userroot/
db.00xfiles — Used internally by the database and should not be moved, deleted, or modified in any way.
log.xxxxxxxxxxfiles — Used to store the transaction logs per database.
DBVERSION— Used for storing the version of the database.
userRoot— Stores the user-defined suffix (user-defined databases) created at setup; for example,
If a new database is created (for example,
testRoot) to store the directory tree under a new suffix, the directory named
testRoot also appears in the
The following is a sample listing of the
userRoot directory contents.
Example 2.2. userroot Database Directory Contents
ancestorid.db DBVERSION entryrdn.db id2entry.db nsuniqueid.db numsubordinates.db objectclass.db parentid.db
userroot subdirectory contains the following files:
ancestorid.db— Contains a list of IDs to find the ID of the entry’s ancestor.
entrydn.db— Contains a list of full DNs to find any ID.
id2entry.db— Contains the actual directory database entries. All other database files can be recreated from this one, if necessary.
nsuniqueid.db— Contains a list of unique IDs to find any ID.
numsubordinates.db— Contains IDs that have child entries.
objectclass.db— Contains a list of IDs which have a particular object class.
parentid.db— Contains a list of IDs to find the ID of the parent.
2.2.3. LDIF Files
Sample LDIF files are stored in the
/var/lib/dirsrv/slapd-instance/ldif directory for storing LDIF-related files. Example 2.3, “LDIF Directory Contents” lists the
/ldif directory contents.
Example 2.3. LDIF Directory Contents
European.ldif Example.ldif Example-roles.ldif Example-views.ldif
European.ldif— Contains European character samples.
Example.ldif— Is a sample LDIF file.
Example-roles.ldif— Is a sample LDIF file similar to
Example.ldif, except that it uses roles and class of service instead of groups for setting access control and resource limits for directory administrators.
The LDIF files exported by
db2ldif.pl scripts in the instance directory are stored in
2.2.4. Lock Files
Each Directory Server instance contains a
/var/lock/dirsrv/slapd-instance directory for storing lock-related files. The following is a sample listing of the
locks directory contents.
Example 2.4. Lock Directory Contents
exports/ imports/ server/
The lock mechanisms control how many copies of the Directory Server process can be running at one. For example, if there is an import job, then a lock is placed in the
imports/ directory to prevent any other
ldif2db (another import), or
db2ldif (export) operations from running. If the server is running as normal, there is a lock in the
server/ directory, which prevents import operations (but not export operations), while if there is an export operation, the lock in the
exports/ directory allows normal server operations but prevents import operations.
The number of available locks can affect overall Directory Server performance. The number of locks is set in the
nsslapd-db-locks attribute. Tuning that attribute value is described in the Performance Tuning Guide.
2.2.5. Log Files
Each Directory Server instance contains a
/var/log/dirsrv/slapd-instance directory for storing log files. The following is a sample listing of the
/logs directory contents.
Example 2.5. Log Directory Contents
access access.20200228-171925 errors access.20200221-162824 access.rotationinfo errors.20200221-162824 access.20200223-171949 audit errors.rotationinfo access.20200227-171818 audit.rotationinfo slapd.stats
The content of the
errorlog files is dependent on the log configuration.
slapd.statsfile is a memory-mapped file which cannot be read by an editor. It contains data collected by the Directory Server SNMP data collection component. This data is read by the SNMP subagent in response to SNMP attribute queries and is communicated to the SNMP master agent responsible for handling Directory Server SNMP requests.
Chapter 7, Log File Reference contains a solid overview of the access, error, and audit log file formats and the information in them.
2.2.6. PID Files
slapd-serverID.startpid files are created in the
/var/run/dirsrv directory when the server is up and running. Both files store the server’s process ID.
2.2.7. Backup Files
Each Directory Server instance contains the following directory and file for storing backup-related files:
/var/lib/dirsrv/slapd-instance/bak— This contains a directory dated with the instance, time and date of the database backup, such as
instance-2020_05_02_16_56_05/, which in turn holds the database backup copy.
/etc/dirsrv/slapd-instance/dse_original.ldif— This is a backup copy of the
dse.ldifconfiguration file from the time of installation.