To define policy rules based on user or group, first you create an LDAP server profile that defines how the firewall connects and authenticates to your directory server. The firewall supports a variety of directory servers, including Microsoft Active Directory (AD), Novell eDirectory, and Sun ONE Directory Server. The server profile also defines how the firewall searches the directory to retrieve the list of groups and the corresponding list of members. If you are using a directory server that is not natively supported by the firewall, you can integrate the group mapping function using the XML API. You can then create a group mapping configuration to Map Users to Groups and Enable User- and Group-Based Policy .
Defining policy rules based on group membership rather than on individual users simplifies administration because you don’t have to update the rules whenever new users are added to a group. When configuring group mapping, you can limit which groups will be available in policy rules. You can specify groups that already exist in your directory service or define custom groups based on LDAP filters. Defining custom groups can be quicker than creating new groups or changing existing ones on an LDAP server, and doesn’t require an LDAP administrator to intervene. User-ID maps all the LDAP directory users who match the filter to the custom group. For example, you might want a security policy that allows contractors in the Marketing Department to access social networking sites. If no Active Directory group exists for that department, you can configure an LDAP filter that matches users for whom the LDAP attribute Department is set to Marketing. Log queries and reports that are based on user groups will include custom groups.