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Set Up User Authentication and Authorization with LDAP

On this page

  • Required Access
  • Prerequisites
  • Recommendation
  • Considerations
  • Conflicts between LDAP Authorization and X.509 Users
  • Usernames
  • Connection String
  • Rolling Restart on Configuration Change
  • Using Public IP Addresses
  • Limitations
  • Procedures
  • Configure Authentication with LDAP
  • Configure Authorization
  • Add an LDAP Database User or Group
  • View LDAP Configuration
  • Disable LDAP Configuration
  • Tutorials for Third-Party LDAP Providers


  • This feature is not available for M0 free clusters, M2, and M5 clusters. To learn more, see Atlas M0 (Free Cluster), M2, and M5 Limits.

  • This feature is not supported on Serverless instances at this time. To learn more, see Serverless Instance Limitations.

Atlas provides the ability to manage user authentication and authorization from all MongoDB clients using your own Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) server over TLS. A single LDAPS (LDAP over TLS) configuration applies to all clusters in a project.

If you enable user authorization with LDAP, you can create LDAP groups on the admin database by mapping LDAP groups to MongoDB roles on your Atlas databases. To use LDAP groups effectively, create additional projects within Atlas to control access to specific deployments in your organization, such as creating separate Atlas projects for development and production environments. You can then map an LDAP group to a role in the Atlas project to provide access to the desired deployment.


When you enable user authorization and an LDAP user doesn't belong to any LDAP group, Atlas doesn't assign any database roles to the user. When you enable user authentication and you disable user authorization, Atlas assigns MongoDB database roles to the LDAP user.

If you have multiple departments with their own billing needs, alert settings, and project members, consider creating a new set of projects or a new organization for each department or business unit.


An explanation of LDAP is out of scope for the MongoDB documentation. Please review RFC 4515 and RFC 4516 or refer to your preferred LDAP documentation.

To manage LDAP users or groups, you must have Organization Owner or Project Owner access to Atlas.

You must meet the following prerequisites to manage user authentication and authorization using LDAP in Atlas:

  • Atlas cluster using MongoDB 4.0 or later.

  • LDAP server using TLS that your Atlas clusters can access over the network using either VPC or VNet peering connection or the cluster nodes' public IP addresses.

  • LDAP group memberships embedded as an attribute for each user in the LDAP entry for user authorization only.

For your LDAPS service to access Atlas clusters, MongoDB recommends one of two configurations:

Using a VPC or VNet:

  1. Run your LDAP server in a VPC or VNet.

  2. Establish a peering connection to your Atlas project.

  3. Use a public FQDN that resolves to the private IP address of your LDAP server.

Using your data center:

  1. Run your LDAP server with a public FQDN that resolves to a public IP address.

  2. Configure the LDAP server to allow inbound access from the Atlas cluster nodes' public IP addresses.

If you enable LDAP authorization, you can't connect to your clusters with users that authenticate with an Atlas-managed X.509 certificate.

After you enable LDAP authorization, you can connect to your clusters with users that authenticate with an self-managed X.509 certificate. However, the user's Common Name in their X.509 certificate must match the Distinguished Name of a user who is authorized to access your database with LDAP.

Atlas uses the full Distinguished Name (DN) of users in your LDAP server as the Atlas username. For example, an example LDAP user named ralph has the following username in Atlas:


If the administrator enables user authentication or both user authentication and authorization with LDAP, database users must override the following parameters in the connection string for their clients.

  • authSource must be $external

  • authenticationMechanism must be PLAIN


The following connection string for mongosh authenticates an LDAP user named rob:

mongosh "mongodb+srv://" \
--authenticationMechanism PLAIN \
--username cn=rob,cn=Users,dc=ldaps-01,dc=myteam,dc=com

To copy the connection string:

  1. Click Database in the top-left corner of Atlas.

  2. Click Connect on the Clusters page.

  3. Edit the string with your User DN and password.


If your passwords, database names, or connection strings contain reserved URI characters, you must escape the characters. For example, if your password is @bc123, you must escape the @ character when specifying the password in the connection string, such as %40bc123. To learn more, see Special Characters in Connection String Password.

If you change your LDAP configuration, Atlas performs a rolling restart of your cluster. This restart allows Atlas to use the correct settings to authenticate users.

You can use public IP addresses that refer to other internal or private IP addresses using Network Address Translation to allow Atlas traffic to your LDAP server. If you do this, be aware that certain activities trigger a change in the Atlas cluster's public IP addresses.

If you allowed LDAP server access based on public IP addresses, changes to the Atlas cluster's public IP address prevent LDAP access. To restore LDAP access, add the new Atlas cluster public IP addresses to the LDAP access list.

You cannot use both LDAP and SCRAM authentication for the same database user.

Use the following tutorials to configure Atlas to authenticate and authorize users from third-party LDAP providers: