Microsoft® Active Directory® (AD) has been the source of truth for user identities since the turn of the century. Yet, its efficacy as an IT management platform has been in decline since the mid-2000s. That is why IT organizations worldwide are interested in a next generation Active Directory replacement.
In short, the next generation Active Directory replacement is called JumpCloud® Directory-as-a-Service®. However, in order to understand the benefits of this cloud identity and access management (CIAM) platform, let’s first discuss why modern IT organizations want to replace Active Directory to begin with.
Characteristics of Active Directory
Active Directory is an on-prem directory services platform designed to manage Microsoft Windows® based IT resources. It was first released in 1999. Networks looked a lot different, at the time. For example, IT resources generally revolved around the Windows operating system, and just about everything was on-prem.
Naturally, AD thrived in this type of environment. It was built for on-prem networks of Windows based IT resources. In fact, AD was the only IT management tool required for a few years around Y2K. It was nice while it lasted.
The IT landscape started to change in the mid-2000s as IT resources began to shift to the cloud. Web applications like Salesforce led the way. Cloud productivity platforms like Google Apps (a.k.a. G Suite) arrived shortly thereafter. Then came Infrastructure-as-a-Service solutions like AWS, GCP, and more.
While the cloud has certainly introduced a wide variety of innovative solutions, one characteristic they all have in common is they cannot be bound to a traditional domain. This has been an issue for IT admins because Active Directory doesn’t work that way. IT resources must be directly bound to the AD domain controller for authentication to take place. Any IT resource that doesn’t follow these rules can only be managed with AD with the help of third-party tools.
Modern IT admins are well aware of these limitations with Active Directory. They also know that so called Identity-as-a-Service (IDaaS) add-ons, such as web application single sign on (SSO), are available to mitigate (Read more...)
*** This is a Security Bloggers Network syndicated blog from JumpCloud authored by Vince Lujan. Read the original post at: https://jumpcloud.com/blog/next-generation-active-directory-replacement/