Open Group Proposes Directory Certification Program

Following hot on the heels of last week's Directory Interoperability Forum, The Open Group ( has announced its plans to create certification tests and procedures that promote the development of directory-enabled applications.

The Open Group's part in the movement to bring directory-enabled applications to the IT market has received endorsements from several of the Forum's founding members--including IBM, Lotus Development Corp. and Novell Inc.--as well as Hewlett-Packard, a member of The Open Group Directory Program.

"This will also encourage ISVs to write to these standards because now they have a non-vendor specific certification mechanism to develop reference implementations and further speed the adoption," says Chris Stone, senior VP of strategy and corporate development for Novell (Provo, Utah).

Implementation of The Open Group's tests is also expected to ensure the interoperability of Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) products and applications, introduced to the AS/400 with V4R3 of OS/400. Stone adds, "When directories first came out, a lightweight access protocol made sense. As directories have proliferated to become a platform themselves, obviously we need to extend them."

Directory products and applications that pass the certification process can apply for an Open Group brand, which will signify that LDAP platform suppliers will stand behind a formal guarantee to the buyer that their product conforms to the interoperability standard over the life of the product.

--L. Greenemeier