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this is the almost antique RHEL4
the RHEL4 that red hat postponed killing off of 4.9 last year
the RHEL4 that is on EXTRA Extended life support
the Extra that you have to pay EXTRA to red hat for .
it did not lock out the root gui login -- it is TOO OLD for that
as pointed out
it is very possible that the root password was set with a time to live
boot into single user and make a new one
seeing as rhel4 is OLD
if you have NOT been paying red hat for the EXTRA EXTENDED life support
-- you "might" ( slight chance) have been "cracked" and you might not be in control of this server
-- slight chance of this