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root password issue

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Charles McCary
Valued Contributor

root password issue

Group,

here's the scenario:

1) We are able to remsh to the system, so we can get to a root prompt.

2) We want to change the root password, but we don't know the OLD password.

3) HPUX 11.11 trusted system.

Thoughts:

Can we simply?
erase the u_pwd field in /tcb/files/auth/r/root


11 REPLIES
Patrick Wallek
Honored Contributor

Re: root password issue

Yes.

To have a null password the line needs to look like:

:u_pwd=:\
Charles McCary
Valued Contributor

Re: root password issue

Patrick,

thanks...no need to go to single user mode right?
Vivek Bhatia
Trusted Contributor

Re: root password issue

Hi Charles,

Yes you can do that by editing the file.

/tcb/files/auth/r/root

Remove the encrypted content from mentioned between.

:u_pwd=:\

And no need to go to single user mode.

Regards
Vivek
Vivek Bhatia
Trusted Contributor

Re: root password issue

For Example , if you have a entry like this.

:u_pwd=XXXXX:\

Then Remove XXXXX (encrypted content from the file) and that will allow you to login with empty password.

Vivek
OldSchool
Honored Contributor

Re: root password issue

"Patrick,

thanks...no need to go to single user mode right?"

how do you propose to login as root to make the change then?
Charles McCary
Valued Contributor

Re: root password issue

See #1 in original question...we have root access, just not the old password. thanks.
Charles McCary
Valued Contributor

Re: root password issue

I guess my main concern is doing this "on the fly" in mulit-user mode. I don't want something to get corrupted.
OldSchool
Honored Contributor

Re: root password issue

ah....missed that bit...yes, you can do it in multiuser. once you "unset" it as described above, simply log in and set it to whatever new value is desired.
Robert-Jan Goossens_1
Honored Contributor
Solution

Re: root password issue

Hi Charles,

Actually if you have root access (remsh) you can do this on the fly.

# vi /tcb/files/auth/r/root

Remove the password hashed field and save.

# passwd root

Regards,
Robert-Jan
doug hosking
Esteemed Contributor

Re: root password issue

Rather than bypassing the protections of normal tools by directly editing the file, I'd be tempted to first try resetting the password with /sbin/passwd (not /usr/bin/passwd) after doing the remsh (or from a single user mode shell, if necessary). If I remember right (don't have access to a system right now to check), this will not ask for the old password.

Permissions on this executable on currently supported HP-UX versions are set to not allow non-root users to run it. Since root COULD directly edit the file and achieve the same result without knowing the password, there is no reason for /sbin/passwd to ask for it. This is likely a much cleaner way of dealing with the issue you face.


Charles McCary
Valued Contributor

Re: root password issue

Group, the solution of editing the root file under the tcb tree worked fine for us.

I did try the /sbin/passwd in one of our test environments and it did prompt for the old password.

Thanks everyone