How to setup the same user/passwd and group on multiple ubuntu machines?

Smoot Carl-Mitchell smoot at
Wed Dec 25 00:00:15 UTC 2013

On Wed, 2013-12-25 at 09:22 +1100, Karl Auer wrote:
> On Tue, 2013-12-24 at 11:26 -0600, Peng Yu wrote:
> > Hi,
> > 
> > I have a number of ubuntu machines on a network. I want to have a
> > simple way so that each machine has the same user/passwd and group.
> You could look into the the mass management tools like puppet. But since
> no-one else has already said this, I will: Same passwords on multiple
> machines is a really bad idea.

It depends on your use case.  If you are managing 100s of machines, you
want a centralized authentication/authorization system. Otherwise trying
to manage 100s of passwords or authentication tokens is a nightmare.

As for centralized administration on Unix like systems, I have used
OpenLDAP as a backend to NIS.  There is a NIS schema for LDAP which
makes the configuration pretty straightforward using the nss_ldap and
the pam_ldap plugins.   There is also an LDAP schema for sudo which
means you can centralize sudo access as well.

Smoot Carl-Mitchell
System/Network Architect
voice: +1 480 922-7313
cell: +1 602 421-9005
smoot at

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