Arthur de Jong

Open Source / Free Software developer

getent.ldap(1) manual page


getent.ldap — query information from LDAP


getent.ldap [options] [DATABASE] [KEY...]


The getent.ldap command can be used to lookup or enumerate information from LDAP. Unlike the getent(1) command, this command completely bypasses the lookups configured in /etc/nsswitch.conf and queries the nslcd(8) daemon directly.

getent.ldap tries to match the behaviour and output of getent and the format in the corresponding flat files as much as possible, however there are a number of differences. If multiple entries are found in LDAP that match a specific query, multiple values are printed (e.g. ethernet addresses that have multiple names, services that support multiple protocols, etc.). Also, some databases have extra options as described below.


The options that may be specified to the getent.ldap command are:

-h, --help

Display short help and exit.

-V, --version

Output version information and exit.


The DATABASE argument may be any of the supported databases below:


Lists or queries email aliases. If KEY is given it searches for the alias by name, otherwise it returns all aliases from LDAP.


Lists or queries ethernet addresses. If KEY matches the format of an ethernet address a search by address is performed, otherwise a search by name is performed or all entries are returned if KEY is omitted. Unlike getent, getent.ldapd does support enumerating all ethernet addresses.


Lists or queries groups. If KEY is numeric, it searches for the group by group id.


The KEY is a user name and groups are returned for which this user is a member. The format is similar to the group output but the group members are left out for performance reasons.


List or search host names and addresses by either host name, IPv4 or IPv6 address. This returns both IPv4 and IPv6 addresses (if available).


Similar to hosts but any supplied IPv6 addresses are treated as host names and only IPv4 addresses are returned.


Similar to hosts but KEY is treated as an IPv6 address or a host name and only IPv6 addresses are returned.


List or query netgroups and netgroup triples (host, user, domain) that are a member of the netgroup. Unlike getent, getent.ldapd does support enumerating all ethernet addresses.


Similar to netgroup except that no subsequent lookups are done to expand netgroups which are member of the supplied netgroup and the output may contain both other netgroup names and netgroup triples.


List or query network names and addresses. KEY may be a network name or address. This map can return both IPv4 and IPv6 network addresses.


Only return IPv4 network addresses.


Only return IPv6 network addresses.


Enumerate or search the user account database. KEY may be a user name or numeric user id or be omitted to list all users.


Enumerate the internet protocols database.


List or search user readable names that map to RPC program numbers. Searching by KEY can be done on name or rpc program number.


List or search the mapping between names for internet services and their corresponding port numbers and protocol types. The KEY can be either a service name or number, followed by an optional slash and protocol name to restrict the search to only entries for the specified protocol.


Enumerate or search extended user account information. Note that shadow information is likely only exposed to the root user and by default nslcd does not expose password hashes, even to root.

See Also

getent(1), nslcd(8)


This manual was written by Arthur de Jong <>.


Currently, getent.ldapd does not correctly set an exit code. It should return the same kind of exit codes as getent does (e.g. for missing entries).