For questions related to users, user accounts, user permissions or guest accounts.

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79
votes
18answers
14k views

Why is it bad to login as root?

I've often come across posts on forums or other websites where you see people joking in such a manner about running/logging in as root as if it's something awful and everyone ought to know about it. ...
53
votes
5answers
144k views

How to manage users and groups?

Just switched from 10.04 to 11.10. I'm wondering about the limited options in the GUI for managing users and groups. Where is the old GUI to change groups, id's, etc. I know that I can do this from ...
50
votes
4answers
66k views

Add user to existing Group

I want to add the Apache user (www-data) to the audio group. I've read the man page for useradd, but I'm not having any luck. I'm running xubuntu 11.10. Here's what I'm doing: $ sudo useradd -G audio ...
34
votes
3answers
13k views

What is the purpose of the 'nobody' user?

After I read List all human users I noticed that there is a user account named 'nobody' in my Ubuntu system. Also I noticed that I can login in this account from terminal using the following command ...
31
votes
3answers
30k views

How to add user without /home

I want to create a new user to run a service on the system but don't want to have /home and other configuration files for it. Like there is a user for postgres but it doesn't have any /home directory. ...
29
votes
4answers
37k views

How to remove a user from a group?

I added a user account to the admin group and discovered I added wrong user. So I now have to remove the account from the admin group. How can I remove an account from a group without deleting the ...
26
votes
5answers
6k views

How to NOT become a root user? Are administrators root?

I installed Ubuntu on my PC. To log in, I use the username and password I created during installation. Does this mean I am a root user? If yes, then how do I become non-root? It looks like non-root ...
25
votes
6answers
108k views

How to enable root login?

I would like to enable the root account on my Ubuntu installation. I realize the security implications of this.
21
votes
1answer
6k views

Force the user to change their password at first login

When I add a new user to my system I set a password and tell it to the new user. If the user doesn't like it, he/she can change it. However in my opinion it is better to force the user to change ...
18
votes
5answers
70k views

Create a new SSH user on Ubuntu Server

Just created a new virtual Ubuntu server and I'm in the process of hardening it for production use. I currently have a root account. I want to do the following: Create a new user (let's call them ...
18
votes
7answers
72k views

How do I kill processes in Ubuntu?

How do I kill all processes running by my own non-root account? I have some spinning smbd processes that I caused from my windows machine and so I telnetted into the linux server and I want to kill ...
18
votes
1answer
579 views

Is it possible to obtain an e-mail address like myname.surname@ubuntu.com

Being an Ubuntu user for about 3 years, is it possible to obtain an e-mail address like myname.surname@ubuntu.com ?
18
votes
4answers
23k views

Simple & easy way to jail users

I need a simple and easy way to jail users in their home directories in Oneiric. Do you have a simple configuration for jailing users, with full help, or some good web links? I would be offering an ...
17
votes
6answers
34k views

Move home folder to second drive

I have 2 HDD drives in my computer. At the moment second drive is mounted as /media/storage. How can I move my user data from /home to /media/storage/home? Can I just move the data over there and ...
17
votes
1answer
22k views

Can you unencrypt / remove encryption from a user home folder? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How to stop using built-in home directory encryption? During installation I have chosen to encrypt my user's home folder. Can I un-encrypt it? How would I do that? I ...
14
votes
6answers
25k views

When I add myself “vboxusers” group I an no longer in the “admins” group

I'm using Ubuntu 11.10 and I installed VirtualBox. This required me to add myself to the vboxusers group but when I add myself to vboxusers group I am no longer be in other groups and especially ...
14
votes
4answers
25k views

Change owner of internal hard drive partition from root to user

I have a number of drives internal and external. Some are partitioned. Most mount automatically at boot (all did at one point). One partition is owned by root and therefore does not mount ...
14
votes
2answers
3k views

How do I set up new users with skel

i have on my server a settings i use for all my users. every time i create a new user i have to copy all the settings over and over. for example: .vimrc. .profile .bashrc firefox homepage to our ...
14
votes
1answer
341 views

How to change the default programs that are associated with every new user that is created?

I am wondering how one would go about changing the default programs that are associated with every new user that is created. For example, Firefox is the default browser for Ubuntu 11.10. In my user ...
14
votes
4answers
33k views

How to make user home folder after account creation?

I created a new user with useradd name and forgot to use -d -m to create their home directory. I tried making one, copying the contents of /etc/skel, and chowning everything to the new user. ...
14
votes
3answers
2k views

How do I restrict user bandwidth usage?

I want to restrict each user to 300 gigabytes of internet usage per month. Are there any GUI or command-based tools to manager my users' bandwidth?
13
votes
3answers
6k views

I deleted the “/etc/passwd” file and cannot log in

I was trying to change my username and also my home directory (/home/username) and my system started to crash. I deleted the passwd file but I had a backup named passwd_bkp. I tried to rename this ...
13
votes
5answers
9k views

Why can other users see the files in my home folder?

I just added a new, underprivileged "desktop user," and I was surprised to discover that it can see the files in my home folder. What is the rational for setting up such lax permissions?
12
votes
1answer
516 views

How to find active users in Ubuntu?

With help of the who command we can get active users, I want only the first field such as user 1 user 2 user 3
12
votes
2answers
6k views

Logging out other users from the command line

Sometimes when there are too many users logged in it can cause my computer to become very slow and laggy due to low amount of available RAM. I would like to be able to quickly log out the other users ...
11
votes
2answers
578 views

What are the disadvantages of having a dot in a user name?

A student just asked what could be the downside of having a dot (. ) in the name of the user. For example: john.doe How will this affect the system or any apps for that matter?
11
votes
3answers
5k views

How do I change the guest session defaults

I have a quite tunned up gnome desktop and I would like for the guest session to share most of the user settings, this includes: Gtk and Metacity themes. Number of panels, placement and applets. ...
11
votes
1answer
233 views

Create file for new user

I'm creating custom build of Ubuntu with some installed packages. My question is how to put a file on desktop automatically after creating new user? For example something.txt containing some text.
10
votes
4answers
3k views

Is there a way to create a hidden account?

For privacy reasons I want to create an account that is invisible to other users (even another administrator) and can be only reached by directly typing the user name in. Is that possible?
10
votes
3answers
373 views

How to find out how many people have downloaded from PPAs

How do I find out how many people use a particular PPA. I see on a particular PPA ; Package build summary A total of 108 builds have been dispatched for this PPA. Completed builds 108 successful 0 ...
10
votes
4answers
15k views

Solving permission problems when using external EXT4 hard disk with multiple linux installs

Hello I have a external hard drive and since I only use Ubuntu and Fedora I decide to format my hard drive to ext4 everything is fine. The problem is when i mount the drive i need to change the ...
10
votes
3answers
20k views

Disable sudo permission to user from command line

I have activated root user in ubuntu and want to use ubuntu as server with no DE. For this I want to disable sudo privilege given to first user. How can I do this from command line ? I know I can use ...
10
votes
5answers
1k views

Why does switching users completely hang my system every time?

I have a fresh install of 11.04 64bit, with 2 administrator accounts and 4 normal accounts. The 4 normal accounts (the kids' accounts) don't have passwords, they can login simply by clicking on ...
9
votes
5answers
3k views

Why does Ubuntu force users to create a password upon installation?

There's been one problem I've had since I installed Ubuntu to run alongside Windows, I assume this would also be the same if it was installed to replace the other operating system as well, the ...
9
votes
3answers
5k views

What is the equivalent user for nobody:nobody from CentOS?

I am converting from centOS and am used to having a nobody:nobody user:group for running services. Does Ubuntu have a similar best practice user:group combination for running a service?
9
votes
3answers
6k views

How to run multiple user X sessions on the same computer, at the same time?

I want to have more than one user logged on at the same time, on the same computer. Each user should have a full GUI X session... It's easy enough to log in to multiple concurrent non-X linux ...
9
votes
2answers
556 views

How is Ubuntu tracking progress towards 200 million users?

Given that ubuntu has a very public goal of reaching 200 million users, how will we know when this goal has been reached? Is a public and transparent method for counting Ubuntu users being used? Is ...
9
votes
1answer
15k views

Default groups for user in Ubuntu?

Installed HP Linux Imaging and Printing by using install script and something crashed. Now I'm only member of my own group and lp. Which are the default groups for users in for example Ubuntu 12.10? ...
9
votes
5answers
11k views

How do I unlock a user account?

I've been to system settings and to User Accounts. My account is the only one on the system and I have previously been able to UnLock the screen so that I could set my account to login without ...
8
votes
6answers
16k views

Can I set my user account to have no password?

If I attempt to change my password to nothing by opening "User Accounts", the "Change" button remains greyed out: How do I change my password to be empty? I know you can set Ubuntu to automatically ...
8
votes
4answers
553 views

I need some data on the distribution of Ubuntu users

I'm a research scholar in JNU (Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi). Now I'm doing a paper in International Political Economy of Windows and Ubuntu. These are two similar products that use ...
8
votes
5answers
4k views

Home directory not being created

I am trying to understand system administration on Ubuntu. So, as an example, I create a dummy user using sudo useradd -d /home/linda linda and the passwd to create a the password. I check that an ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

When Ubuntu asks for an admin user's password, how does it decide which administrative user to ask for?

I am setting up an Ubuntu (10.10) machine that will be used by several people. It is a shared machine in a small office. Its primary roles are hosting virtual machines with VirtualBox and serving ...
8
votes
2answers
4k views

I unexpetedly deleted administrator account and the other accounts are asking root password

I unexpectedly deleted my user account (the only administrator for the machine). I have another account which is standard account now i cant access my hard disk or anything with that standard account ...
8
votes
3answers
197 views

Why is there a new Group for me as a User?

Why is it that when I provide a username during the installation process for Ubuntu, that a new group is created with that name too? Is there a reason we're not just plain Administrators?
8
votes
2answers
978 views

How can I run anacron in user mode?

I would like to set up a scheduled task via anacron but I would like to do so in user mode. How can I achieve this?
8
votes
1answer
955 views

How to make guest sessions start with Unity 2D by Default?

My PC does not have enough resources to run two accounts in Unity 3D. When I open a guest account from an already started session, it uses Unity 3D by default. How do I change that?
7
votes
3answers
2k views

Delete a user and all files owned by this user

I have used deluser without the parameter --remove-all-files: $ deluser 'user' Is there a way other than rm -r /home/user to remove all files owned by a user now (since I have already executed ...
7
votes
2answers
33k views

How to give nopasswd access to multiple commands via sudoers?

Below is what I know: I have to add this below line in sudoers file to give rights to the user for particular task. user_name ALL=NOPASSWD: /usr/bin/apt-get install In this case I want to give ...
7
votes
1answer
6k views

How do I give multiple users access to a Windows NTFS partition?

I have USB hard-drive connected to my Ubuntu (11.04) machine. Every time I reboot the computer and login it mounts the hard-drive. Since the disk has NTFS on it, Linux assigns some user to be the ...