View Full Version : You guys are great but one more thing

Gareth Cliff
7th May 2002, 09:39
I did as I was told the attack that worked was the alt ctrl f6 thing, now I am at the login in stage and root doesnít work, it asks me for a password which I donít know, I wasnít the one that installed the Linux and I donít have contact with the guy who did. One more bit of information I type in root in the login area, then when I get to the password area the cursor doesnít move when I type, I am not sure what this all means, I am new to the Linux world and I was thinking of reinstalling but I am a little hesitant because I donít want to ruin the computer and or lose drivers. I was wondering if you guys thought reinstalling was a good idea or if you think it may be to difficult for me. Thanks for all your help either way

7th May 2002, 09:58
ummm if you have a shaddow password file, re-install eaiser way. even if you don't have a shaddow password file, its still probably easier to re-install.

Either that or hunt him down and get da password

7th May 2002, 14:16
Most of the time you can recover (or change, for that matter) the root password if you have phisical access to the console (which you do have).
It's quite easy (http://linux-sxs.org/password.html) :)

9th May 2002, 02:18
replacing the root password is ALWAYS possible if you have access to the computer.


1) put in the linux CD and boot it
2) boot up the recovery console.
3) mount your linux system.
4) open the /etc/passwd on the linux hard drive partition and find the line with root in it. remove the second field, eg




5) do the same for the /etc/shadow file on you linux system partition, eg.




7) reboot you system. You should now be able to log in as root with no password. run passwd to set a new password.

9th May 2002, 12:30
Type "linux single" at the LILO prompt (or edit the grub command line). The system should boot up and give you a root prompt.


9th May 2002, 12:33
The LILO "Linux single" will still ask for the password once the system is started.

(at least on slackware and debian systems, some others might not be quite as secure)

9th May 2002, 12:41
You are right, but it works on RedHat and Mandrake by default (e.g. I leave it that way for convenience, coz if someone can actually type linux single on my computer, I am screwed anyway). I assumed he had one of those. The recovery CD (or for that matter any boot disk) should work for more secure systems.


9th May 2002, 12:46
Having the linux single password protected actually does come in handy.

At work, we set up some linux boxes as OPAC (open access) library search computers. These are quite locked down, to the point where not even the root user can get a shell unless it is rebooted and run as "linux single".

Without the password on linux single, getting into the box would be quite trivial.

On most computers though, it doesn't really matter much.

9th May 2002, 12:53
Gotta love "open access" :) Seriously, I would be locking down everything on those computers too. That's pretty cool that you guys use Linux. Do you limit users to web browsing, or is it pretty much a normal Linux workstation?


9th May 2002, 13:04
At work (it is a private school in perth),

We use linux for most of the servers (I owe samba, squid and apache big time), and the those opac machines (these are fairly old, slow machines, that just have to run a web browser for the library search, and that is it) We use windows everywhere else unfortunately.

It is simply scary how much work our main linux server does though by itself, and even scarier is that it is only a Duron 700.

10th May 2002, 09:19
Unfortunately, even the password-protected "linux single" doesn't help you at all. In fact, I'd sort of say it's misleading.

"linux single" will accomplish something very similar to running "linux init=/bin/sh".

That, there's no way to password protect, except from the bootloader, or the bios, or a physical lock on the comptuer, or.... :)

10th May 2002, 09:21
I'll have to try that :)

Thanks *kicking myself in the background for not knowing that one!*