Microsoft to Publish Kerberos Spec

In an effort to speed interoperability among disparate products, Microsoft Corp. announced that it will publish a portion of the specifications of its Kerberos implementation in Windows 2000.

SAN JOSE, Calif.—In an effort to speed interoperability among dispa-rate products, Microsoft Corp. an-nounced Wednesday that it will pub-lish a portion of the specifications of its Kerberos implementation in Win-dows 2000.

The Redmond, Wash., company will grant a royalty-free license to the group membership PAC (privilege ac-cess certificate) data, but will not open up the interactive login data.

The step, which Craig Mundie, chief technical officer at Microsoft, announced during his keynote speech at the RSA Conference here, represents a policy shift for Microsoft. Critics have accused the company of hindering in-teroperability efforts by refusing to give other vendors access to its specifi-cation.

Kerberos, a network authentica-tion protocol developed at the Massa-chusetts Institute of Technology, is used in numerous products across the industry and many vendors create their own implementations of the technology.

"This is something that we think should help achieve interopera-bility," Mundie said. He added that the company has also sent its specification to the Internet Engineering Task Force.

In other news, Microsoft also announced the release of an XML filter for its Internet Security and Accelera-tion Server firewall. The filter, which is available for download from Micro-softs Web site, inspects incoming XML and SOAP (simple open access protocol) data.