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KDC (8) | System administration commands and daemons | Unix Manual Pages | :man


kdc - Kerberos 5 server


Configuration File
See Also


kdc [-c file | Xo --config-file= file ] [-p-| --no-require-preauth ] [--max-request=size] [-H-| --enable-http ] [--no-524] [--kerberos4] [--kerberos4-cross-realm] [-r string | Xo --v4-realm= string ] [-K-| --kaserver ] [-P portspec | Xo --ports= portspec ] [--detach] [--addresses=list of addresses]


kdc serves requests for tickets. When it starts, it first checks the flags passed, any options that are not specified with a command line flag are taken from a config file, or from a default compiled-in value.

Options supported:

-c file, --config-file= file
Specifies the location of the config file, the default is /var/heimdal/kdc.conf. This is the only value that can’t be specified in the config file.
-p , --no-require-preauth
Turn off the requirement for pre-autentication in the initial AS-REQ for all principals. The use of pre-authentication makes it more difficult to do offline password attacks. You might want to turn it off if you have clients that don’t support pre-authentication. Since the version 4 protocol doesn’t support any pre-authentication, serving version 4 clients is just about the same as not requiring pre-athentication. The default is to require pre-authentication. Adding the require-preauth per principal is a more flexible way of handling this.
--max-request= size
Gives an upper limit on the size of the requests that the kdc is willing to handle.
-H , --enable-http
Makes the kdc listen on port 80 and handle requests encapsulated in HTTP.
don’t respond to 524 requests
respond to Kerberos 4 requests
respond to Kerberos 4 requests from foreign realms. This is a known security hole and should not be enabled unless you understand the consequences and are willing to live with them.
-r string, --v4-realm= string
What realm this server should act as when dealing with version 4 requests. The database can contain any number of realms, but since the version 4 protocol doesn’t contain a realm for the server, it must be explicitly specified. The default is whatever is returned by krb_get_lrealm. This option is only availabe if the KDC has been compiled with version 4 support.
-K , --kaserver
Enable kaserver emulation (in case it’s compiled in).
-P portspec, --ports= portspec
Specifies the set of ports the KDC should listen on. It is given as a white-space separated list of services or port numbers.
--addresses= list of addresses
The list of addresses to listen for requests on. By default, the kdc will listen on all the locally configured addresses. If only a subset is desired, or the automatic detection fails, this option might be used.

All activities are logged to one or more destinations, see krb5.conf(5), and krb5_openlog(3). The entity used for logging is kdc.


The configuration file has the same syntax as krb5.conf(5), but will be read before /etc/krb5.conf, so it may override settings found there. Options specific to the KDC only are found in the "[kdc]" section. All the command-line options can preferably be added in the configuration file. The only difference is the pre-authentication flag, which has to be specified as:

require-preauth = no

(in fact you can specify the option as --require-preauth=no ).

And there are some configuration options which do not have command-line equivalents:

check-ticket-addresses = boolean
Check the addresses in the ticket when processing TGS requests. The default is FALSE.
allow-null-ticket-addresses = boolean
Permit tickets with no addresses. This option is only relevant when check-ticket-addresses is TRUE.
allow-anonymous = boolean
Permit anonymous tickets with no addresses.
enforce-transited-policy = boolean
Always verify the transited policy, ignoring the disable-transited-check flag if set in the KDC client request.
encode_as_rep_as_tgs_rep = boolean
Encode AS-Rep as TGS-Rep to be bug-compatible with old DCE code. The Heimdal clients allow both.
kdc_warn_pwexpire = time
How long before password/principal expiration the KDC should start sending out warning messages.

The configuration file is only read when the kdc is started. If changes made to the configuration file are to take effect, the kdc needs to be restarted.

An example of a config file:
require-preauth = no
v4-realm = FOO.SE
key-file = /key-file


If the machine running the KDC has new addresses added to it, the KDC will have to be restarted to listen to them. The reason it doesn’t just listen to wildcarded (like INADDR_ANY) addresses, is that the replies has to come from the same address they were sent to, and most OS:es doesn’t pass this information to the application. If your normal mode of operation require that you add and remove addresses, the best option is probably to listen to a wildcarded TCP socket, and make sure your clients use TCP to connect. For instance, this will listen to IPv4 TCP port 88 only:
kdc --addresses= --ports="88/tcp"

There should be a way to specify protocol, port, and address triplets, not just addresses and protocol, port tuples.


kinit(1), krb5.conf(5)

Created by Blin Media, 2008-2013