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From fa5c5fb4f8e7bcadf3e5a3798bd060720fd35eaa Mon Sep 17 00:00:00 2001
From: Sumit Bose <>
Date: Tue, 20 Oct 2020 13:34:41 +0200
Subject: [PATCH 03/10] doc: explain required AD permissions

When using a restricted account with adcli some operations might fail
because the account might not have all required permissions. The man
page is extended and now explains which permissions are needed under
given circumstances.

 doc/    |  10 ++++
 doc/adcli.xml      | 132 +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
 library/adenroll.c |  30 ++++++-----
 3 files changed, 160 insertions(+), 12 deletions(-)

diff --git a/doc/ b/doc/
index 4490688..50fb777 100644
--- a/doc/
+++ b/doc/
@@ -33,14 +33,17 @@ EXTRA_DIST = \
 	version.xml \ \
 	samba_data_tool_path.xml \
+	permissions.xml \
 	$(man8_MANS) \
+	permissions.xml \
 	--nonet \
+	--xinclude \
 	--stringparam man.output.quietly 1 \
 	--stringparam ansi \
 	--stringparam 1 \
@@ -50,6 +53,13 @@ XSLTPROC_FLAGS = \
+permissions.xml: ../library/adenroll.c adcli.xml
+	echo "<itemizedlist>" > $@
+	grep '".*".*/\* :ADPermissions: ' $< | sed -e 's#.*"\(.*\)".*/\* :ADPermissions: \(.*\)\*/$$#<listitem><para>\1</para><itemizedlist><listitem><para>\2</para></listitem></itemizedlist></listitem>#' | sed -e 's#\*#</para></listitem><listitem><para>#g' >> $@
+	echo "</itemizedlist>" >> $@
+$(man8_MANS): permissions.xml
diff --git a/doc/adcli.xml b/doc/adcli.xml
index 1437679..cc44fd8 100644
--- a/doc/adcli.xml
+++ b/doc/adcli.xml
@@ -885,6 +885,138 @@ Password for Administrator:
+<refsect1 id='delegation'>
+	<title>Delegated Permissions</title>
+	<para>It is common practice in AD to not use an account from the Domain
+	Administrators group to join a machine to a domain but use a dedicated
+	account which only has permissions to join a machine to one or more OUs
+	in the Active Directory tree. Giving the needed permissions to a single
+	account or a group in Active Directory is called Delegation. A typical
+	example on how to configured Delegation can be found in the Delegation
+	section of the blog post
+	<ulink url="">Who can add workstation to the domain</ulink>.
+	</para>
+	<para>When using an account with delegated permissions with adcli
+	basically the same applies as well. However some aspects are explained
+	here in a bit more details to better illustrate different concepts of
+	Active Directory and to make it more easy to debug permissions issues
+	during the join. Please note that the following is not specific to
+	adcli but applies to all applications which would like to modify
+	certain properties or objects in Active Directory with an account with
+	limited permissions.</para>
+	<para>First, as said in the blog post it is sufficient to have
+	<literal>"Create computer object"</literal> permissions to join a
+	computer to a domain. But this would only work as expected if the
+	computer object does not exist in Active Directory before the join.
+	Because only when a new object is created Active Directory does not
+	apply additional permission checks on the attributes of the new
+	computer object. This means the delegated user can add any kind of
+	attribute with any value to a new computer object also long as they
+	meet general constraints like e.g. that the attribute must be defined
+	in the schema and is allowed in a objectclass of the object, the value
+	must match the syntax defined in the schema or that the
+	<option>sAMAccountName</option> must be unique in the domain.</para>
+	<para>If you want to use the account with delegated permission to
+	remove computer objects in Active Directory (adcli delete-computer) you
+	should of course make sure that the account has
+	<literal>"Delete computer object"</literal> permissions.</para>
+	<para>If the computer object already exists the
+	<literal>"Create computer object"</literal> permission does not apply
+	anymore since now an existing object must be modified. Now permissions
+	on the individual attributes are needed. e.g.
+	<literal>"Read and write Account Restrictions"</literal> or
+	<literal>"Reset Password"</literal>. For some attributes Active
+	Directory has two types of permissions the plain
+	<literal>"Read and Write"</literal> permissions and the
+	<literal>"Validated Write"</literal> permissions. For the latter case
+	there are two specific permissions relevant for adcli, namely
+		<itemizedlist>
+			<listitem><para>Validated write to DNS host name</para></listitem>
+			<listitem><para>Validated write to service principal name</para></listitem>
+		</itemizedlist>
+	Details about the validation of the values can be found in the
+	<literal>"Validated Writes"</literal> section of
+	<literal>[MS-ADTS]</literal>, especially
+	<ulink url="">dNSHostName</ulink>
+	and
+	<ulink url="">servicePrincipalName</ulink>.
+	To cut it short for <literal>"Validated write to DNS host name"</literal>
+	the domain part of the fully-qualified hostname must either match the
+	domain name of the domain you want to join to or must be listed in the
+	<option>msDS-AllowedDNSSuffixes</option> attribute. And for
+	<literal>"Validated write to service principal name"</literal> the
+	hostname part of the service principal name must match the name stored
+	in <option>dNSHostName</option> or some other attributes which are
+	not handled by adcli. This also means that
+	<option>dNSHostName</option> cannot be empty or only contain a short
+	name if the service principal name should contain a fully-qualified
+	name.</para>
+	<para>To summarize, if you only have validated write permissions you
+	should make sure the domain part of the hostname matches the domain you
+	want to join or use the <option>--host-fqdn</option> with a matching
+	name.</para>
+	<para>The plain read write permissions do not run additional
+	validations but the attribute values must still be in agreement with
+	the general constraints mentioned above. If the computer object already
+	exists adcli might need the following permissions which are also needed
+	by Windows clients to modify existing attributes:
+		<itemizedlist>
+			<listitem><para>Reset Password</para></listitem>
+			<listitem><para>Read and write Account Restrictions</para></listitem>
+			<listitem><para>Read and (validated) write to DNS host name</para></listitem>
+			<listitem><para>Read and (validated) write to service principal name</para></listitem>
+		</itemizedlist>
+	additionally adcli needs
+		<itemizedlist>
+			<listitem><para>Read and write msDS-supportedEncryptionTypes</para></listitem>
+		</itemizedlist>
+	This is added for security reasons to avoid that Active Directory
+	stores Kerberos keys with (potentially weaker) encryption types than
+	the client supports since Active Directory is often configured to still
+	support older (weaker) encryption types for compatibility reasons.
+	</para>
+	<para>All other attributes are only set or modified on demand, i.e.
+	adcli must be called with an option the would set or modify the given
+	attribute. In the following the attributes adcli can modify together
+	with the required permissions are listed:
+	<xi:include xmlns:xi="" href="permissions.xml" />
+	</para>
+	<para>For the management of users and groups (adcli create-user,
+	adcli delete-user, adcli create-group, adcli delete-group) the same
+	applies only for different types of objects, i.e. users and groups.
+	Since currently adcli only supports the creation and the removal of
+	user and group objects it is sufficient to have the
+	<literal>"Create/Delete User objects"</literal> and
+	<literal>"Create/Delete Group objects"</literal> permissions.</para>
+	<para>If you want to manage group members as well (adcli add-member,
+	adcli remove-member) <literal>"Read/Write Members"</literal> permissions
+	are needed as well.</para>
+	<para>Depending on the version of Active Directory the
+	<literal>"Delegation of Control Wizard"</literal> might offer some
+	shortcuts for common task like e.g.
+		<itemizedlist>
+			<listitem><para>Create, delete and manage user accounts</para></listitem>
+			<listitem><para>Create, delete and manage groups</para></listitem>
+			<listitem><para>Modify the membership of a group</para></listitem>
+		</itemizedlist>
+	The first 2 shortcuts will provided full access to user and group
+	objects which, as explained above, is more than currently is needed.
+	After using those shortcut it is a good idea to verify in the
+	<literal>"Security"</literal> tab in the <literal>"Properties"</literal>
+	of the related Active Directory container that the assigned permissions
+	meet the expectations.</para>
 <refsect1 id='bugs'>
diff --git a/library/adenroll.c b/library/adenroll.c
index e745295..98e9786 100644
--- a/library/adenroll.c
+++ b/library/adenroll.c
@@ -71,19 +71,25 @@ static krb5_enctype v51_earlier_enctypes[] = {
+/* The following list containst all attributes handled by adcli, some are
+ * read-only and the others can be written as well. To properly document the
+ * required permissions each attribute which adcli tries to modify should have
+ * a comment starting with ':ADPermissions:' and the related permissions in AD
+ * on the same line. Multiple permissions can be seperated with a '*'. For all
+ * other attribute a suitable comment is very welcome. */
 static char *default_ad_ldap_attrs[] =  {
-	"sAMAccountName",
-	"userPrincipalName",
-	"msDS-KeyVersionNumber",
-	"msDS-supportedEncryptionTypes",
-	"dNSHostName",
-	"servicePrincipalName",
-	"operatingSystem",
-	"operatingSystemVersion",
-	"operatingSystemServicePack",
-	"pwdLastSet",
-	"userAccountControl",
-	"description",
+	"sAMAccountName", /* Only set during creation */
+	"userPrincipalName",   /* :ADPermissions: Read/Write userPrincipal Name */
+	"msDS-KeyVersionNumber", /* Manages by AD */
+	"msDS-supportedEncryptionTypes", /* :ADPermissions: Read/Write msDS-SupportedEncryptionTypes */
+	"dNSHostName", /* :ADPermissions: Read/Write dNSHostName * Read and write DNS host name attributes * Validated write to DNS host name */
+	"servicePrincipalName", /* :ADPermissions: Read/Write servicePrincipalName * Validated write to service principal name */
+	"operatingSystem", /* :ADPermissions: Read/Write Operating System */
+	"operatingSystemVersion", /* :ADPermissions: Read/Write Operating System Version */
+	"operatingSystemServicePack", /* :ADPermissions: Read/Write operatingSystemServicePack */
+	"pwdLastSet", /* Managed by AD */
+	"userAccountControl", /* :ADPermissions: Read/Write userAccountControl */
+	"description", /* :ADPermissions: Read/Write Description */