How to configure FreeIPA server On CentOS 7 or RHEL 7

(Last Updated On: May 11, 2019)

Configure FreeIPA server On CentOS 7 or RHEL 7

FreeIPA is an opensource identity management system for Linux/Unix environments which provides centralized account management and authentication, like Microsoft Active Directory or LDAP.

Identity: (machine, user, virtual machines, groups, authentication credentials)
Policy: (configuration settings, access control information)
Audit Trail: (events, logs, analysis)

The main goal of FreeIPA configuration is to provide a centrally managed  Identity, Policy, and Audit system. It comes with Web UI and command line tools to perform administrative tasks.


FreeIPA server Configuration

Before configuring IPA server, we need to make sure that we follow some necessary steps. After completing these steps we may go ahead



Ensure /etc/resolv.conf has the below value.




Set the hostname:

hostnamectl set-hostname



add a host entry on the server to resolve system hostname.

vi /etc/hosts       ipa 




Installation Process:

 Update yum repository

yum update -y


Install the required packages:

yum install -y ipa-server ipa-server-dns bind-dyndb-ldapsystemctl start named systemctl enable named


Now, install the IPA-server using the following command.



Answer all questions the installer prompt during the configuration.

The log file for this installation can be found in /var/log/ipaserver-install.log


This program will set up the IPA Server.

This includes:

* Configure a stand-alone CA (dogtag) for certificate management

* Configure the Network Time Daemon (ntpd)

* Create and configure an instance of Directory Server

* Create and configure a Kerberos Key Distribution Center (KDC)

* Configure Apache (httpd)  * Configure DNS (bind)

* Configure the KDC to enable PKINIT

To accept the default shown in brackets, press the Enter key.

WARNING: conflicting time&date synchronization service 'chronyd' will be disabled in favor of ntpd.

Do you want to configure integrated DNS (BIND)? [no]: yes << To use integrated DNS with FreeIPA

Enter the fully qualified domain name of the computer on which you're setting up server software. Using the form.

Server host name []: << Enter the Hostname

Warning: skipping DNS resolution of host

The domain name has been determined based on the host name.

Please confirm the domain name []: << Enter the domain name

The kerberos protocol requires a Realm name to be defined.

This is typically the domain name converted to uppercase.

Please provide a realm name [LOCALHOST.COM]: LOCALHOST.COM << Type the REALM

Certain directory server operations require an administrative user. This user is referred to as the Directory Manager and has full access to the Directory for system management tasks and will be added to the instance of directory server created for IPA. The password must be at least 8 characters long.

Directory Manager password: **** << Enter Directory manager password

Password (confirm): **** << Re-Enter Directory manager password

The IPA server requires an administrative user, named 'admin'.This user is a regular system account used for IPA server administration.

IPA admin password: **** << Enter IPA admin password - Used for Web UI and other administrative tasks

Password (confirm): **** << Re-Enter IPA admin password

Checking DNS domain, please wait ...

Do you want to configure DNS forwarders? [yes]: yes << Type yes to configure DNS forwarder Zone

Following DNS servers are configured in /etc/resolv.conf:,

Do you want to configure these servers as DNS forwarders? [yes]: yes << Type yes to use the existing name server from resolv.conf file.

All DNS servers from /etc/resolv.conf were added.

You can enter additional addresses now:

Enter an IP address for a DNS forwarder, or press Enter to skip: << Add aditional name servers

DNS forwarder added. You may add another.

Enter an IP address for a DNS forwarder, or press Enter to skip: Press Enter << Press Enter to complete adding name servers

Checking DNS forwarders, please wait ...

Do you want to search for missing reverse zones? [yes]: yes << Type yes to search for reverse zone

Do you want to create a reverse zone for IP [yes]: yes << Type yes to create PTR for IPA server

Please specify the reverse zone name []:  Press enter << to use the reverse zone name using reverse zone(s)

The IPA Master Server will be configured with:

IP address(es):
   Domain name:
     ealm name: IPA.LOCALHOST.COM 

BIND DNS Server will be configured to serve IPA domain with:

 Forward policy:  only
Reverse zone(s):

Continue to configure the system with these values? [no]: yes << Type yes to confirm the inputs

The following operations may take some minutes to complete.

Please wait until the prompt is returned.

Configuring NTP daemon (ntpd)

[1/4]: stopping ntpd

[2/4]: writing configuration

[3/4]: configuring ntpd to start on boot

[4/4]: starting ntpdDone configuring NTP daemon (ntpd).

Configuring directory server (dirsrv).

Estimated time: 30 seconds

[1/45]: creating directory server instance

[2/45]: enabling ldapi

[3/45]: configure autobind for root

[4/45]: stopping directory server

[5/45]: updating configuration in dse.ldif

[6/45]: starting directory server

[7/45]: adding default schema

[8/45]: enabling memberof plugin

[9/45]: enabling winsync plugin

[10/45]: configuring replication version plugin

[11/45]: enabling IPA enrollment plugin

[12/45]: configuring uniqueness plugin

[13/45]: configuring uuid plugin

[14/45]: configuring modrdn plugin

[15/45]: configuring DNS plugin

[16/45]: enabling entryUSN plugin

[17/45]: configuring lockout plugin

[18/45]: configuring topology plugin

[19/45]: creating indices

[20/45]: enabling referential integrity plugin

[21/45]: configuring certmap.conf

[22/45]: configure new location for managed entries

[23/45]: configure dirsrv ccache

[24/45]: enabling SASL mapping fallback

[25/45]: restarting directory server

[26/45]: adding sasl mappings to the directory

[27/45]: adding default layout

[28/45]: adding delegation layout

[29/45]: creating container for managed entries

[30/45]: configuring user private groups

[31/45]: configuring netgroups from hostgroups

[32/45]: creating default Sudo bind user

[33/45]: creating default Auto Member layout

[34/45]: adding range check plugin

[35/45]: creating default HBAC rule allow_all

[36/45]: adding entries for topology management

[37/45]: initializing group membership

[38/45]: adding master entry

[39/45]: initializing domain level

[40/45]: configuring Posix uid/gid generation

[41/45]: adding replication acis

[42/45]: activating sidgen plugin

[43/45]: activating extdom plugin

[44/45]: tuning directory server

[45/45]: configuring directory to start on bootDone configuring directory server (dirsrv).

Configuring Kerberos KDC (krb5kdc)

[1/10]: adding kerberos container to the directory

[2/10]: configuring KDC

[3/10]: initialize kerberos container

[4/10]: adding default ACIs

[5/10]: creating a keytab for the directory

[6/10]: creating a keytab for the machine

[7/10]: adding the password extension to the directory

[8/10]: creating anonymous principal

[9/10]: starting the KDC

[10/10]: configuring KDC to start on bootDone configuring Kerberos KDC (krb5kdc).

Configuring kadmin

[1/2]: starting kadmin

[2/2]: configuring kadmin to start on bootDone configuring kadmin.

Configuring certificate server (pki-tomcatd).
Estimated time: 3 minutes

[1/29]: configuring certificate server instance

[2/29]: exporting Dogtag certificate store pin

[3/29]: stopping certificate server instance to update CS.cfg

[4/29]: backing up CS.cfg

[5/29]: disabling nonces

[6/29]: set up CRL publishing

[7/29]: enable PKIX certificate path discovery and validation

[8/29]: starting certificate server instance

[9/29]: configure certmonger for renewals

[10/29]: requesting RA certificate from CA

[11/29]: setting up signing cert profile

[12/29]: setting audit signing renewal to 2 years

[13/29]: restarting certificate server

[14/29]: publishing the CA certificate

[15/29]: adding RA agent as a trusted user

[16/29]: authorizing RA to modify profiles

[17/29]: authorizing RA to manage lightweight CAs

[18/29]: Ensure lightweight CAs container exists

[19/29]: configure certificate renewals

[20/29]: configure Server-Cert certificate renewal

[21/29]: Configure HTTP to proxy connections

[22/29]: restarting certificate server

[23/29]: updating IPA configuration

[24/29]: enabling CA instance

[25/29]: migrating certificate profiles to LDAP

[26/29]: importing IPA certificate profiles

[27/29]: adding default CA ACL

[28/29]: adding 'ipa' CA entry

[29/29]: configuring certmonger renewal for lightweight CAs

Done configuring certificate server (pki-tomcatd).

Configuring directory server (dirsrv)

[1/3]: configuring TLS for DS instance

[2/3]: adding CA certificate entry

[3/3]: restarting directory serverDone configuring directory server (dirsrv).

Configuring ipa-otpd

[1/2]: starting ipa-otpd

[2/2]: configuring ipa-otpd to start on bootDone configuring ipa-otpd.Configuring ipa-custodia

[1/5]: Generating ipa-custodia config file

[2/5]: Making sure custodia container exists

[3/5]: Generating ipa-custodia keys

[4/5]: starting ipa-custodia

[5/5]: configuring ipa-custodia to start on bootDone configuring ipa-custodia.

Configuring the web interface (httpd)

[1/22]: stopping httpd

[2/22]: setting mod_nss port to 443

[3/22]: setting mod_nss cipher suite

[4/22]: setting mod_nss protocol list to TLSv1.0 - TLSv1.2

[5/22]: setting mod_nss password file

[6/22]: enabling mod_nss renegotiate

[7/22]: disabling mod_nss OCSP

[8/22]: adding URL rewriting rules

[9/22]: configuring httpd

[10/22]: setting up httpd keytab

[11/22]: configuring Gssproxy

[12/22]: setting up ssl

[13/22]: configure certmonger for renewals

[14/22]: importing CA certificates from LDAP

[15/22]: publish CA cert

[16/22]: clean up any existing httpd ccaches

[17/22]: configuring SELinux for httpd

[18/22]: create KDC proxy config

[19/22]: enable KDC proxy

[20/22]: starting httpd

[21/22]: configuring httpd to start on boot

[22/22]: enabling oddjobdDone configuring the web interface (httpd).

Configuring Kerberos KDC (krb5kdc)

[1/1]: installing X509 Certificate for PKINIT Done configuring Kerberos KDC (krb5kdc).

Applying LDAP updatesUpgrading IPA:

Estimated time: 1 minute 30 seconds

[1/9]: stopping directory server

[2/9]: saving configuration

[3/9]: disabling listeners

[4/9]: enabling DS global lock

[5/9]: starting directory server

[6/9]: upgrading server

[7/9]: stopping directory server

[8/9]: restoring configuration

[9/9]: starting directory server Done.

Restarting the KDCConfiguring DNS (named)

[1/12]: generating rndc key file

[2/12]: adding DNS container

[3/12]: setting up our zone

[4/12]: setting up reverse zone

[5/12]: setting up our own record

[6/12]: setting up records for other masters

[7/12]: adding NS record to the zones

[8/12]: setting up kerberos principal

[9/12]: setting up named.conf

[10/12]: setting up server configuration

[11/12]: configuring named to start on boot

[12/12]: changing resolv.conf to point to ourselves

Done configuring DNS (named).

Restarting the web server to pick up resolv.conf changes

Configuring DNS key synchronization service (ipa-dnskeysyncd)

[1/7]: checking status

[2/7]: setting up bind-dyndb-ldap working directory

[3/7]: setting up kerberos principal

[4/7]: setting up SoftHSM

[5/7]: adding DNSSEC containers

[6/7]: creating replica keys

[7/7]: configuring ipa-dnskeysyncd to start on boot

Done configuring DNS key synchronization service (ipa-dnskeysyncd).

Restarting ipa-dnskeysyncdRestarting named

Updating DNS system records

Configuring client side components

Using existing certificate '/etc/ipa/ca.crt'.

Client hostname:
           ealm: LOCALHOST.COM
     DNS Domain:
     IPA Server:
         BaseDN: dc=localhost,dc=com

Skipping synchronizing time with NTP server.

New SSSD config will be created
Configured sudoers in /etc/nsswitch.conf

Configured /etc/sssd/sssd.conf


[try 1]: Forwarding 'schema' to json server ''


[try 1]: Forwarding 'ping' to json server ''

[try 1]: Forwarding 'ca_is_enabled' to json server ''Systemwide CA database updated.

Adding SSH public key from /etc/ssh/

Adding SSH public key from /etc/ssh/

Adding SSH public key from /etc/ssh/

[try 1]: Forwarding 'host_mod' to json server ''SSSD enabled

Configured /etc/openldap/ldap.confConfigured /etc/ssh/ssh_configConfigured /etc/ssh/sshd_config

Configuring as NIS domain.Client configuration complete.

The ipa-client-install command was successful 
Setup complete

Next steps:

1. You must make sure these network ports are open:

                        TCP Ports:
                            * 80, 443: HTTP/HTTPS
                            * 389, 636: LDAP/LDAPS
                            * 88, 464: kerberos
                            * 53: bind                
                        UDP Ports:
                            * 88, 464: kerberos
                            * 53: bind
                            * 123: ntp

2. You can now obtain a kerberos ticket using the command: 'kinit admin'
This ticket will allow you to use the IPA tools (e.g., ipa user-add)   and the web user interface.
Be sure to back up the CA certificates stored in /root/cacert.p12
These files are required to create replicas. The password for thesefiles is the Directory Manager password

configure the firewall to allow the required ports.

                        TCP Ports:                  

                         * 80, 443: HTTP/HTTPS                  
                         * 389, 636: LDAP/LDAPS                  
                         * 88, 464: kerberos                  
                         * 53: bind               

                       UDP Ports:                  

                         * 88, 464: kerberos                  
                         * 53: bind                  
                         * 123: ntp


Example: firewall-cmd --permanent --add-port=53/tcp        firewall-cmd --reload




 Verify FreeIPA Server


kinit admin

If FreeIPA is working properly, the above command will prompt you for the IPA admin password. Enter the IPA admin password you set during the installation process and then press Enter.

After entering the password, you should get shell prompt.

Next, verify the server functionality by searching IPA user.


ipa user-find admin



1 user matched

User login: admin  
Last name: Administrator  
Home directory: /home/admin  
Login shell: /bin/bash 
Principal alias: [email protected]  
UID: 827000000  
GID: 827000000  
Account disabled: False

Number of entries returned 1

Access FreeIPA web interface (Client Part)      or  access the Ip through browser


IPA Server

Note: you need to do a few steps on the client system.

  1. Add dns record on host file under /etc/hosts (linux) & C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc (windows)

Entry: ipa



  1. Add DNS IP on the ethernet settings.






So, guys, Although this a basic overview of IPA server installation. But I have tried my best to simplify things about IPA server and client so that you can have a better understanding and user experience. Now it’s your turn to pay me back.

Now I am expecting your responses. If you like this content or even dislike,  just leave a comment. Your responses will motivate me to do better and deliver better. I will try my best to enrich my skill.

So thank you guys, Have a good day.

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