X-tremely powerful Active Directory interface for php

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0.3.3 2014-05-05 10:56 UTC


The AD-X library aims to provide an easy-to-use, object-oriented and powerful tool to work with Active Directory and related components, like Exchange.


The important ones

  • An understandable, object-oriented API to work with Active Directory
  • Automatic data conversion - with this library, you won't encounter a value that has to be converted to something else before you can work with it in php ( like unicodePwd or lastLogonTimestamp ) - you simply use the values and the library will take care of the conversion
  • User management / Microsoft Exchange mailbox management ( yes, you can create Exchange mailboxes / mail users with this! )
  • Support for paged searches
  • Support for referrals - useful if you operate on multiple domains in a forest
  • TLS or SSL encryption support
  • Directory Schema caching allows to perform checks, validations and provide guidance before you even attempt to modify anything on the server
  • Simple change tracking on your directory server
  • Selectors - a simple and elegant way to retrieve objects

The nice to have ones

  • ldap v3 protocol support
  • Namespaced classes to prevent collisions
  • Exceptions-based error handling
  • Autoloading support via Composer
  • Object-to-json conversion for easy integration with your front-end
  • Optional simple ldap query builder




Via Composer:

This will install the latest stable release:
composer require alaneor/ad-x:dev-master ( visit Packagist for list of all available versions )

Post-installation ( optional, but strongly recommended ) :

Generate the schema cache:

Create a new php script with the following contents, providing relevant information like domain and your domain credentials:

    include './vendor/autoload.php'; // Include Composer's autoloader

    $link = new ADX\Core\Link( '', 389 ); // Connect to server on default port
    $link->bind( '', 'password' ); // Authenticate to the server
    ADX\Core\Schema::build( $link ); // Build the local schema cache ( takes some time, go get a coffee )

A future release will include a wizard-like script to guide you through the process right after installation.

Depending on the stability of your Active Directory environment, you might need to re-build the schema cache occasionally, especially after upgrading to a newer Active Directory functional level or after installing new directory-related components, like MS Exchange, OCS Services or similar.


Documentation is currently available for the API only, but it includes a lot of examples and explanations. I recommend that you read the documentation in the following order:

  • Link : How to connect to the directory and perform authentication
  • Task : How to search the directory and retrieve data
  • Object : How to work with retrieved objects and read/manipulate its attributes
  • Attribute : How to manipulate individual attributes and read/manipulate its values
  • User : How to work with users and manage Exchange mailboxes / mail users

Read online: API documentation

Generate the documentation locally:

  1. Download the library
  2. Install the dependencies using Composer:
composer install --dev
  1. Generate the API documentation using ApiGen ( installed by Composer ):
php ./vendor/bin/apigen.php
  1. Generated documentation will be available at ./docs/www/index.html

Known limitations

  • The ldap v2 protocol is not supported and never will be. Pull requests to provide backwards-compatibility will be refused.
  • The library has been built specifically for Active Directory. Compatibility with standards-based ldap servers like OpenLDAP is likely broken. I have no plans to address this at the moment but a future release might make such thing possible.
  • Unit tests are missing completely. I realise this might be a serious issue for future development and plan to address this with a future update. Any help with writing tests is much appreciated.

Future to-dos

  • Improve the API documentation
  • Provide "helper" classes to simplify working with computers, groups, contacts etc.
  • Write unit tests
  • Write tutorials

Found an issue / have idea?

Please submit issues and ideas to the Github's issue tracker.

Contributing rules will be provided in a future update - for now, please try to match the programming style currently used in the code when submitting pull requests.


This software is licensed under the BSD (3-Clause) License. See the LICENSE file for more information.


If you like this project and enjoy using it, feel free to spread the word about it wherever you wish.

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