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Old 10-29-2007, 07:28 AM   #1
tomthebomb3
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Registered: Oct 2007
Distribution: Debian 4.0 r0 (etch)
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Red face Forgot root passwd!! :-(


Hey

I'm new to linux and have downloaded debian, as it was recommended to me.

I have forgotten my root password!!! I have tried to get in to single user mode but that still requires a passwd. I googled my prob and found this page http://www.debianhelp.co.uk/root.htm

I have tried both solutions but to no avail.

Has anyone got any ideas??

Thanks in advance

Tom
 
Old 10-29-2007, 08:22 AM   #2
indeliblestamp
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Hmm.. single user mode shouldn't ask for a password. Anyway, as an alternative: If you have a live cd nearby, boot in with it, mount and chroot into your harddisk's root partition and change the password. i.e, once you've logged in with the live cd, open a terminal and type:
Code:
mkdir /tmp/scrap
mount /dev/hda1 /tmp/scrap (replace hda1 with sda1 or with wherever your / partition is installed)
chroot /tmp/scrap
passwd
After your done, type exit and umount /tmp/scrap and reboot normally without the live cd.
I've not tried this, I usually use chroot just to make lilo changes, so someone please correct me if this won't work.
 
Old 10-29-2007, 08:33 AM   #3
PTrenholme
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Can you use the sudo command? (That one asks for your password to run a command as root.) If you can, you can do a sudo passwd root to reset the "root" password. (I just installed Kubuntu 7.10 on one of my computers, and it was easier to do that than to search for whatever default root password was used by the installer -- which doesn't ask for a root password. I mention this since Ubuntu is Debian based, and sudo was automatically set up by the install, and so I thought it might also be done in a real Debian installation.)

As to the instructions you referenced, they should have worked if you followed them exactly. Any "Linux Rescue CD" should enable you to reset the root password following those instructions.
 
Old 10-29-2007, 08:37 AM   #4
tomthebomb3
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Hey

When i type "su -" it just says sorry and goes back to the user prompt
 
Old 10-29-2007, 09:08 AM   #5
dickgregory
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Notice that there is a difference between su - and sudo. su will ask for the root password and continue to behave as root until you exit. sudo asks for YOUR password and acts as root just for one command.
 
Old 10-29-2007, 09:19 AM   #6
tomthebomb3
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i get this

tom@TOMSTESTBOX:~$ sudo
sudo: no passwd entry for root!

shall i go back and add a password into the /shadow or /passwd files?

Tom
 
Old 10-29-2007, 10:28 AM   #7
PTrenholme
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Are you sure that you typed only sudo? If you did that, you should have gotten the usage instructions:
Code:
$ sudo
usage: sudo -K | -L | -V | -h | -k | -l | -v
usage: sudo [-HPSb] [-p prompt] [-u username|#uid]
            { -e file [...] | -i | -s | <command> }
Did you try the command exactly as I typed it in my prior post: sudo passwd root ? You should have seen something like this:
Code:
$ sudo passwd root
Password:
Changing password for user root.
New UNIX password:
Retype new UNIX password:
passwd: all authentication tokens updated successfully.
(Note that the response to the first "Password:" prompt is your password.)
Also, the response you noted suggests that the root password has, in fact, been deleted. Try booting in single-user mode again -- you may not now need a password.
 
Old 10-29-2007, 10:45 AM   #8
Flash19
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I wish I would have seen this earlier. I was locked out of a fresh install of ubuntu so I just reinstalled it. lol.
 
Old 10-29-2007, 10:46 AM   #9
Wim Sturkenboom
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PTrenholme View Post
... (I just installed Kubuntu 7.10 on one of my computers, and it was easier to do that than to search for whatever default root password was used by the installer ...
A bit off topic:
You will search forever as the root account is locked (see man passwd, -l option)
 
Old 10-29-2007, 05:36 PM   #10
PTrenholme
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wim Sturkenboom
You will search forever as the root account is locked (see man passwd, -l option)
Strange. I believe that I can now log in a root with no problem on Kubuntu. I guess the password was unlocked by my usage of the passwd command, eh?

Edit: OK, now I'm on the Kubuntu 7.10 distribution, and su - worked just fine (using the password I'd entered.) So it seems that my use of sudo to set the password undid any lock that was set.

Last edited by PTrenholme; 10-29-2007 at 05:57 PM.
 
Old 10-30-2007, 12:07 AM   #11
Wim Sturkenboom
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You can indeed unlock by running sudo passwd root.
 
  


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