MIT Kerberos V5-1.11.3

Introduction to MIT Kerberos V5

MIT Kerberos V5 is a free implementation of Kerberos 5. Kerberos is a network authentication protocol. It centralizes the authentication database and uses kerberized applications to work with servers or services that support Kerberos allowing single logins and encrypted communication over internal networks or the Internet.

This package is known to build and work properly using an LFS-7.4 platform.

Package Information

MIT Kerberos V5 Dependencies


DejaGnu-1.5.1 (required to run the testsuite), keyutils-1.5.6, OpenLDAP-2.4.36, Python-2.7.5 (used during the testsuite) and rpcbind-0.2.1 (used during the testsuite)



Some sort of time synchronization facility on your system (like ntp-4.2.6p5) is required since Kerberos won't authenticate if there is a time difference between a kerberized client and the KDC server.

User Notes:

Installation of MIT Kerberos V5

MIT Kerberos V5 is distributed in a TAR file containing a compressed TAR package and a detached PGP ASC file. You'll need to unpack the distribution tar file, then unpack the compressed tar file before starting the build.

After unpacking the distribution tarball and if you have GnuPG-1.4.14 installed, you can authenticate the package. First, check the contents of the file krb5-1.11.3.tar.gz.asc.

gpg --verify krb5-1.11.3.tar.gz.asc krb5-1.11.3.tar.gz

You will probably see output similar to:

gpg: Signature made Wed Aug  8 22:29:58 2012 GMT using RSA key ID F376813D
gpg: Can't check signature: public key not found

You can import the public key with:

gpg --keyserver --recv-keys 0xF376813D

Now re-verify the package with the first command above. You should get a indication of a good signature, but the key will still not be certified with a trusted signature. Trusting the downloaded key is a separate operation but it is up to you to determine the level of trust.

Build MIT Kerberos V5 by running the following commands:

cd src &&
sed -e "s@python2.5/Python.h@& python2.7/Python.h@g" \
    -e "s@-lpython2.5]@&,\n  AC_CHECK_LIB(python2.7,main,[PYTHON_LIB=-lpython2.7])@g" \
    -i &&
sed -e "s@interp->result@Tcl_GetStringResult(interp)@g" \
    -i kadmin/testing/util/tcl_kadm5.c &&
autoconf &&
./configure CPPFLAGS="-I/usr/include/et -I/usr/include/ss" \
            --prefix=/usr                                  \
            --sysconfdir=/etc                              \
            --localstatedir=/var/lib                       \
            --with-system-et                               \
            --with-system-ss                               \
            --enable-dns-for-realm &&

The regression test suite is designed to be run after the installation has been completed.

Now, as the root user:

make install &&

for LIBRARY in gssapi_krb5 gssrpc k5crypto kadm5clnt_mit kadm5srv_mit \
               kdb5 kdb_ldap krb5 krb5support verto ; do
    [ -e  /usr/lib/lib$*.* ] && chmod -v 755 /usr/lib/lib$*.*
done &&

mv -v /usr/lib/*        /lib &&
mv -v /usr/lib/*    /lib &&
mv -v /usr/lib/* /lib &&

ln -v -sf ../../lib/        /usr/lib/        &&
ln -v -sf ../../lib/    /usr/lib/    &&
ln -v -sf ../../lib/ /usr/lib/ &&

mv -v /usr/bin/ksu /bin &&
chmod -v 755 /bin/ksu   &&

install -v -dm755 /usr/share/doc/krb5-1.11.3 &&
cp -vfr ../doc/*  /usr/share/doc/krb5-1.11.3 &&


To test the installation, you must have DejaGnu-1.5.1 installed and issue: make check.

Command Explanations

sed -e ...: First sed fixes Python detection and second one fixes build with Tcl 8.6.

--enable-dns-for-realm: This switch allows realms to be resolved using the DNS server.

--with-system-et: This switch causes the build to use the system-installed versions of the error-table support software.

--with-system-ss: This switch causes the build to use the system-installed versions of the subsystem command-line interface software.

--localstatedir=/var/lib: This parameter is used so that the Kerberos variable run-time data is located in /var/lib instead of /usr/var.

mv -v /usr/bin/ksu /bin: Moves the ksu program to the /bin directory so that it is available when the /usr filesystem is not mounted.

--with-ldap: Use this switch if you want to compile OpenLDAP database backend module.

Configuring MIT Kerberos V5

Config Files

/etc/krb5.conf and /var/lib/krb5kdc/kdc.conf

Configuration Information

Kerberos Configuration


You should consider installing some sort of password checking dictionary so that you can configure the installation to only accept strong passwords. A suitable dictionary to use is shown in the CrackLib-2.9.0 instructions. Note that only one file can be used, but you can concatenate many files into one. The configuration file shown below assumes you have installed a dictionary to /usr/share/dict/words.

Create the Kerberos configuration file with the following commands issued by the root user:

cat > /etc/krb5.conf << "EOF"
# Begin /etc/krb5.conf

    default_realm = <LFS.ORG>
    encrypt = true

    <LFS.ORG> = {
        kdc = <>
        admin_server = <>
        dict_file = /usr/share/dict/words

    .<> = <LFS.ORG>

    kdc = SYSLOG[:INFO[:AUTH]]
    admin_server = SYSLOG[INFO[:AUTH]]
    default = SYSLOG[[:SYS]]

# End /etc/krb5.conf

You will need to substitute your domain and proper hostname for the occurrences of the <belgarath> and <> names.

default_realm should be the name of your domain changed to ALL CAPS. This isn't required, but both Heimdal and MIT recommend it.

encrypt = true provides encryption of all traffic between kerberized clients and servers. It's not necessary and can be left off. If you leave it off, you can encrypt all traffic from the client to the server using a switch on the client program instead.

The [realms] parameters tell the client programs where to look for the KDC authentication services.

The [domain_realm] section maps a domain to a realm.

Create the KDC database:

kdb5_util create -r <LFS.ORG> -s

Now you should populate the database with principals (users). For now, just use your regular login name or root.

kadmin: add_policy dict-only
kadmin: addprinc -policy dict-only <loginname>

The KDC server and any machine running kerberized server daemons must have a host key installed:

kadmin: addprinc -randkey host/<>

After choosing the defaults when prompted, you will have to export the data to a keytab file:

kadmin: ktadd host/<>

This should have created a file in /etc named krb5.keytab (Kerberos 5). This file should have 600 (root rw only) permissions. Keeping the keytab files from public access is crucial to the overall security of the Kerberos installation.

Exit the kadmin program (use quit or exit) and return back to the shell prompt. Start the KDC daemon manually, just to test out the installation:


Attempt to get a ticket with the following command:

kinit <loginname>

You will be prompted for the password you created. After you get your ticket, you can list it with the following command:


Information about the ticket should be displayed on the screen.

To test the functionality of the keytab file, issue the following command:

ktutil: rkt /etc/krb5.keytab
ktutil: l

This should dump a list of the host principal, along with the encryption methods used to access the principal.

At this point, if everything has been successful so far, you can feel fairly confident in the installation and configuration of the package.

Additional Information

For additional information consult Documentation for krb5-1.11.3 on which the above instructions are based.

Init Script

If you want to start Kerberos services at boot, install the /etc/rc.d/init.d/krb5 init script included in the blfs-bootscripts-20130908 package using the following command:

make install-krb5


Installed Programs: gss-client, gss-server, k5srvutil, kadmin, kadmin.local, kadmind, kdb5_ldap_util, kdb5_util, kdestroy, kinit, klist, kpasswd, kprop, kpropd, krb5-config, krb5kdc, krb5-send-pr, ksu, kswitch, ktutil, kvno, sclient, sim_client, sim_server, sserver, uuclient and uuserver
Installed Libraries:,,,,,,,,, and
Installed Directories: /usr/include/gssapi, /usr/include/gssrpc, /usr/include/kadm5, /usr/include/krb5, /usr/lib/krb5, /usr/share/doc/krb5-1.11.3, /usr/share/examples/krb5 and /var/lib/krb5kdc

Short Descriptions


is a host keytable manipulation utility.


is an utility used to make modifications to the Kerberos database.


is a server for administrative access to a Kerberos database.


is the KDC database utility.


removes the current set of tickets.


is used to authenticate to the Kerberos server as a principal and acquire a ticket granting ticket that can later be used to obtain tickets for other services.


reads and displays the current tickets in the credential cache.


is a program for changing Kerberos 5 passwords.


takes a principal database in a specified format and converts it into a stream of database records.


receives a database sent by kprop and writes it as a local database.


gives information on how to link programs against libraries.


is the Kerberos 5 server.


is the super user program using Kerberos protocol. Requires a properly configured /etc/shells and ~/.k5login containing principals authorized to become super users.


makes the specified credential cache the primary cache for the collection, if a cache collection is available.


is a program for managing Kerberos keytabs.


prints keyversion numbers of Kerberos principals.


used to contact a sample server and authenticate to it using Kerberos 5 tickets, then display the server's response.


is the sample Kerberos 5 server.

contain the Generic Security Service Application Programming Interface (GSSAPI) functions which provides security services to callers in a generic fashion, supportable with a range of underlying mechanisms and technologies and hence allowing source-level portability of applications to different environments.

contains the administrative authentication and password checking functions required by Kerberos 5 client-side programs.

contain the administrative authentication and password checking functions required by Kerberos 5 servers.

is a Kerberos 5 authentication/authorization database access library.

is an all-purpose Kerberos 5 library.

Last updated on 2013-08-23 03:32:24 -0700