Nils Kassube kassube at
Fri Oct 3 19:07:13 UTC 2008

Ruben Safir wrote:
> On Fri, Oct 03, 2008 at 04:07:14PM +0200, Nils Kassube wrote:
> > Ruben Safir wrote:
> > > On Fri, Oct 03, 2008 at 11:33:36AM +0000, Anthony M. Rasat wrote:
> > > > You need to start in single mode then change his password. Do
> > > > this by appending kernel line in grub menu a single word "single"
> > > > then press enter and b button to boot. You will enter command
> > > > line mode without login as root. Change his password and reboot.
> > > > You will be able to start login using this new password.
> > >
> > > This setting is sometimmes not enough if you have a password set on
> > > single user mode.
> >
> > What is a "password set on single user mode"? Can you explain what
> > you are talking about?
> Yes - grub can be set up to demand a root password in single user mode
> and as a matter of fact, debian distro's default to this setting and
> have done so for more years than I care to remember.

OK, that is possible but not the default. Therefore I wouldn't expect this 
situation because the OP doesn't mention it.

> > > The easiest way to deal with this, IMO, is boot off a live CD and
> > > remove the entries from /etc/passwd and /ect/shadow for root. 
> > > You'll then have access.
> >
> > Don't do that because then you don't have a root account any longer.
> A little common sense aplied would bring one to conclude that you don't
> delete the whole entry, just the password in the files.

You know, there are sometimes very strange suggestions on this list. 
Therefore I prefer not to apply too much common sense but only read what 
was suggested. Better safe than sorry. And like Rashkae wrote, don't 
expect that someone who asks how to reset the password will know what to 
do with your advice.

Anyway, if I understand it right, you want to delete the root password. 
But that is a very bad idea IMHO. Then you should have at least mentioned 
that after doing that you would have to set a new password for root. Or 
as a better alternative you should lock the root account again because 
with Ubuntu we usually don't set a root password but have the account 
locked instead. I know some people prefer to have a root password, but 
that is not the default and should not be expected.


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