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Old 03-16-2007, 11:22 AM   #1
Kyle Harris
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Registered: Mar 2007
Posts: 2

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pam_cracklib password history not working

I have been attempting to enable pam_cracklib to check a password in a password history file with no luck. No matter what I seem to try, nothing is ever added to the opasswd file. I have tried this on several stations with no luck so I must be missing something. I have been following the documentation as best I can, and according to other sites, this should be working. I'm beginning to think this might have something to do with the distro I'm running, but not sure.

The problem is I can't seem to get it to work. So, I loaded up a test machine from scratch using RHEL 4.4 with all updates as of 3-14-07. I then did the following:

1.) touch /etc/security/opasswd {creates the necessary old password file}
2.) chown root:root /etc/security/opasswd
3.) chmod 600 /etc/security/opasswd
Note I have opened the permissions up on this file for testing with no more luck.
4.) I modified the system-auth file which I'm pretty sure is the file this flavor of Linux uses with the following line:

password sufficient /lib/security/$ISA/ nullok use_authtok md5 shadow remember=12

Here is the entire file. The only thing changed from the default file is the line above. I simply added remember=12 to it.

# This file is auto-generated.
# User changes will be destroyed the next time authconfig is run.
auth required /lib/security/$ISA/
auth sufficient /lib/security/$ISA/ likeauth nullok
auth required /lib/security/$ISA/

account required /lib/security/$ISA/
account sufficient /lib/security/$ISA/ uid < 100 quiet
account required /lib/security/$ISA/

password requisite /lib/security/$ISA/ retry=3
password sufficient /lib/security/$ISA/ nullok use_authtok md5 shadow remember=12
password required /lib/security/$ISA/

session required /lib/security/$ISA/
session required /lib/security/$ISA/

If I change the line above from sufficient to requered as in the example on the site referenced above such as follows:
password sufficient /lib/security/$ISA/ nullok use_authtok md5 shadow remember=12

I then get the error:
passwd: Authentication token manipulation error
{This tells me I must be editing the correct file}

What do I need to do to create the password history file using pam_cracklib?
Old 03-16-2007, 11:40 AM   #2
Kyle Harris
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Registered: Mar 2007
Posts: 2

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More Information

The site I referenced above was

I couldn't include the URL in my original post as it was my first post on this forum. Also I had a type-o in the original post.

"If I change the line above from sufficient to requered . . ." should have been required, spelled correctly.


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