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10.6. Kerberos

Kerberos is a network authentication protocol designed to provide strong authentication for client/server applications by using secret-key cryptography. Originally developed at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, it has been included as part of Solaris to provide strong authentication for Solaris network applications. Because of its widespread acceptance and implementation in other operating systems, including Windows, Linux, and OS/X, the Kerberos authentication protocol can interoperate in a heterogeneous environment, allowing users on machines running one OS to securely authenticate themselves on hosts of a different OS.

10.6.1. Why Use Kerberos?

Kerberos allows administrators and users to secure their networks by using secure authentication protocols for users and services. Instead of users transmitting passwords over the network in the clear, Kerberos enables the user to type a password just once per work session (work day), and yet still access network services with secure authentication methods that protect the passwords. Kerberos is a Single Sign-On (SSO) system.


  

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