Stephen Gran on 19 Aug 2005 13:24:57 -0000

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Re: [PLUG] Terminal/shell login with no password

On Sat, Aug 20, 2005 at 08:29:17PM -0400, Eric said:
> I need some SysAdmin advice... 
> I have a Red Hat box that I'm installing some software on and the users expect 
> to connect with no password.  I'm okay with that since it's not on the 
> network and they are all hard-wired terminals.  First I tried zeroing out the 
> password in the neat little gooey (GUI) tool but it won't let me save the 
> user that way.  Failing that, I tried to replace the "x" in the password file 
> with nothing.  No joy - the login fails without even asking for the password.  

As others have pointed out, you likely want to edit /etc/shadow, not

> Does this mean that I have to tinker with PAM?   Last time I tried that I 
> froze myself out of the damn box so bad I had to boot into single user mode 
> and un-do my mistake(s).  Since then I've just left it alone :-)

You may have to anyway.  If the service they are connecting to uses pam,
then it is up to pam to authenticate them, no matter what you do with
the password field.  There is an option to the password parameter in pam
files (null_ok) that allows empty passwords to work - otherwise they are
treated as locked accounts.  So, if this line isn't there, the
passwordless accounts will still mysteriously fail.

My advice is (if the service uses pam) just edit/create the file for
that service, and make sure a password is optional, rather than
|  Stephen Gran                  | "Eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow |
|             | you may work."                          |
| |                                         |

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