Share Thunderbird Address book via LDAP


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After years of frustration waiting for the Mozilla Thunderbird folks to add the ability to edit LDAP address-books, and years of frustration with the pigheadedness and brain-damagedness of LDAP server software, I decided to write my own little pseudo-LDAP server.

This is a proof of concept only and not meant for production use yet.

Here it is, in Perl: generic-ldap-0.1 It merely reads in

and shares that out via the LDAP protocol, using the Net::LDAP::Server module. Writing this meant seeing what the various email clients (Thunderbird, Evolution, KMail) actually wanted to see.

The nastiest, most brain-damaged part of LDAP is the non-standard field (attribute) names. None of these programs agree on what to call "home street address" versus "work street address," for example. What a nightmare. My little server tries to remedy this by copying what it can suss out, into every possible field that your email client might be looking for.

What needs to be done yet?

This is written as an extensible system with Plugins. At the moment it fills my internal needs -- specifically, sharing a single Thunderbird address-book inside an office.

Please contact me if you would like help adding features or additional development.

William Lindley,, 480.947.6100