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Old 01-01-2007, 09:46 PM   #1
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Registered: Oct 2006
Distribution: fedora 6, ubuntu
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setting up "network accounts"

At this point, I have 2 or 3 (k)ubuntu workstations and a linux server in my house. When I upgrade the ubuntus, its a pain to reconfigure the accounts on each computer for each person in my family. How do I set up "network accounts"? I tried looking for a tutorial, but i don't know the technical name for this. I want to make it so i simply configure accounts on the server and each client looks to the server for user authentication/login.
i hope this is clear

Old 01-01-2007, 11:59 PM   #2
Registered: Jun 2002
Location: Orange County, CA
Distribution: Debian (squeeze), kernel 2.6.30-2-amd64
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Hi Krelp,

I'm afraid I'm quite short on concrete details, but I think one avenue that will solve your problems is LDAP. I used it about a year or so ago to centralize login authentication to a single server, and got it working on my home network, but I kind of drifted onto other things after that. So you'll have to do a fair amount of reading on the subject to figure out how it'll help your particular situation; to that end, here are some links I found useful:


If you're willing to put down money for a book, I can highly recommend this one by Gerald Carter, he really explains it clearly in detail:

Once I got LDAP running, I was able to create login accounts on the server. Then on client machines you can configure them to refer to the server for authentication. Once authenticated, you can even have a user's /home directories (which reside on the server) mounted on the client after login has completed. This means that any changes a user makes to his/her desktop will follow them should they log in from a different machine on the same network later.

I'm sorry I can't offer more details at this point, like I said, I did this a couple of years ago. But I think it's one solution to your dilemma, and hopefully others on this site will be able to fill in some blanks. Good luck!
Old 01-02-2007, 09:48 AM   #3
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One thing you can try is NIS, I think that might be a bit easier to setup rather than LDAP.

Edit: here is the URL to a tutorial on NIS:

Last edited by jman623; 01-02-2007 at 09:51 AM.
Old 01-02-2007, 10:32 AM   #4
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Or look on, under the Networking section for guides & how-tos to set up
LDAP, NIS, or other forms of centralized login.
Old 01-02-2007, 11:01 AM   #5
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i'll start reading these and see if i can get something set up.

Old 01-02-2007, 02:47 PM   #6
Registered: Sep 2006
Location: Sydney Australia
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Password server using rdist

Using NIS and LDAP is a little top heavy for a simple home system. I always feel umeasy with NIS because all its information is stored in unreadable databases.

The command rdist distributes files to remote computers. It uses ssh transfer making it secure and is commonly is used for distributing the passwd, group and shadow files. See

and google for the rest


account, ldap, nis

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