LDAP Setup

  • For your LDAP integration, we will need to know how to connect to your LDAP server and what to say once we connect.

    Blackboard LDAP Requirements

    1. IP address of the LDAP server
    2. Certificate (if using LDAPS)
    3. The Windows username for each staff member (in the staff file)
    4. Either the name of the Windows Domain or the DN

    How to Connect to the LDAP Server

    What is the external URL/IP address of your LDAP Server?

    You will need to create a firewall exception for us to reach your LDAP server. Although we cannot assist you with this activity, we can test to see if the port is open.

    Do you want to use LDAP or LDAPS?

    These are the same with the exception of LDAPS being encrypted.
    If you use LDAPS we will need a certificate from your LDAP server. Self-signed certificates are acceptable.

    Speaking to the LDAP Server After We Connect

    To correctly authenticate users, we need to know who “specifically” is trying to connect. This means we need to know users’ Windows Domain account, and it must be linked to the account we are creating for them in Blackboard (which usually comes from the Student Information System and/or the HR System).


    Example: Joe Smith works for the school district as a teacher. He is in the SIS with an ID of 123456. However, when he comes to school in the morning and logs into his computer, he uses “jsmith2” as his login. The district has a Windows domain of AwesomeDistrict.com.


    We will need to receive data in the staff file that tells us that Joe Smith (id: 123456) has a login of “jsmith2” and that their domain name is “AwesomeDistrict.com”. So, we will need one of two pieces of information:


    The Name of Your Windows Domain – Quite often this is something like “Blackboard.net” and your staff emails will already have it. jsmith@AwesomeDistrict.com often means their Windows Domain is AwesomeDistrict.com.

    The DN for Your Users – This is Active Directory terminology for the specific DN of the user. It looks something like: “cn=jsmith2, cn=Users, dc=AwesomeDistrict, dc=com”


    Our authentication method supports using either format:

    1. jsmith2@AwesomeDistrict.com
    2. “cn=jsmith2, cn=Users, dc=AwesomeDistrict, dc=com”


    This information needs to be in either the staff file that you provide us or a supplemental file that we can combine with the staff file. It is acceptable to simply include a field in the file that lists the username and then tell us that “Everyone in the file is @AwesomeDistrict.com” or similarly with the DN.


    Note: It is required that you provide the active directory username for each person who will be logging in to use Blackboard using LDAP.