An Example of Ignoring Referential Integrity: The LDAP Standard

By Michael Blaha

April 10, 2008 Abstract: In an earlier article on ODBMS.ORG (Referential Integrity Is Important For Databases, 2005) we explained how referential integrity applies to modeling, programming, and databases. Referential integrity is a constraint that ensures that references between data are valid and intact. Relational DBMSs have intrinsic support for referential integrity, though it often goes unused. Some OO DBMSs also have support as ObjectStore illustrates. Our earlier article alluded to the LDAP standard as an example that demonstrates the peril of ignoring referential integrity and we will now elaborate. The LDAP standard illustrates the consequences of ignoring referential integrity when building applications.

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