getting past a password barrier in linux.

Discussion in 'NZ Computing' started by Alex Axolotl, Nov 24, 2004.

  1. Alex Axolotl

    Alex Axolotl Guest

    John S. wrote:
    > Hi,
    >
    > Trying to find some advice for an aquaintance who is trying to
    > assist the widow of a guy who dabbled with computers and
    > installed some version of linux on a second computer.
    >
    > The guy died suddenly recently and the family would like to check
    > if there's anything important on the computer but haven't been
    > able to guess what the administrator password might be.
    >
    > Pretty vague kind of question, but what would need to be
    > specified (eg the flavour of linux used etc) by them to be able
    > to get realistic advice on whether they might have any luck in
    > searching the computer?
    >
    > My gut feel would be to suggest they give the idea away, but
    > maybe there are things they could try?
    >
    > Any suggestions appreciated.
    >
    > Cheers, John S
    >
    >
    >


    Sorry to hear that

    From the redhat manual, but its the same for other distros too.


    You can log in with single-user mode and create a new root password.

    Reboot your computer. If you are currently set up to log in to X rather
    than a console, you will need to press [Ctrl]-[X] when prompted. When
    you see the boot: prompt, type linux single to enter single-user mode.
    Some of the filesystems will be mounted, and you will find a bash#
    prompt when you've entered single-user mode (note that this prompt will
    look somewhat different than the prompt you're accustomed to).

    Now, you can change root's password by typing

    bash# passwd root


    You'll be asked to re-type the password for verification. Once you're
    finished, the password will be changed and you can reboot by typing
    shutdown -r now at the prompt; then you can log in to root as before.

    then go cd /home and ls -la to see what the user accounts are and then
    change the user password for the account you want by typing passwd username.
     
    Alex Axolotl, Nov 24, 2004
    #1
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  2. Alex Axolotl

    John S. Guest

    Hi,

    Trying to find some advice for an aquaintance who is trying to
    assist the widow of a guy who dabbled with computers and
    installed some version of linux on a second computer.

    The guy died suddenly recently and the family would like to check
    if there's anything important on the computer but haven't been
    able to guess what the administrator password might be.

    Pretty vague kind of question, but what would need to be
    specified (eg the flavour of linux used etc) by them to be able
    to get realistic advice on whether they might have any luck in
    searching the computer?

    My gut feel would be to suggest they give the idea away, but
    maybe there are things they could try?

    Any suggestions appreciated.

    Cheers, John S
     
    John S., Nov 25, 2004
    #2
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  3. Alex Axolotl

    rick Guest

    On Thu, 25 Nov 2004 07:57:15 +0000, John S. wrote:

    > Hi,
    >
    > Trying to find some advice for an aquaintance who is trying to
    > assist the widow of a guy who dabbled with computers and
    > installed some version of linux on a second computer.
    >
    > The guy died suddenly recently and the family would like to check
    > if there's anything important on the computer but haven't been
    > able to guess what the administrator password might be.
    >
    > Pretty vague kind of question, but what would need to be
    > specified (eg the flavour of linux used etc) by them to be able
    > to get realistic advice on whether they might have any luck in
    > searching the computer?
    >
    > My gut feel would be to suggest they give the idea away, but
    > maybe there are things they could try?
    >
    > Any suggestions appreciated.
    >
    > Cheers, John S


    Try a linux live cd (mepis) - boot from cd and mount partition

    rick
     
    rick, Nov 25, 2004
    #3
  4. Alex Axolotl

    Daniel Guest

    John S. wrote:
    > Hi,
    >
    > Trying to find some advice for an aquaintance who is trying to
    > assist the widow of a guy who dabbled with computers and
    > installed some version of linux on a second computer.
    >
    > The guy died suddenly recently and the family would like to check
    > if there's anything important on the computer but haven't been
    > able to guess what the administrator password might be.
    >
    > Pretty vague kind of question, but what would need to be
    > specified (eg the flavour of linux used etc) by them to be able
    > to get realistic advice on whether they might have any luck in
    > searching the computer?
    >
    > My gut feel would be to suggest they give the idea away, but
    > maybe there are things they could try?
    >
    > Any suggestions appreciated.
    >
    > Cheers, John S
    >
    >
    >


    Knoppix maybe? (linux on a bootable CD)
     
    Daniel, Nov 25, 2004
    #4
  5. Alex Axolotl

    Peter Guest

    John S. wrote:
    > Trying to find some advice for an aquaintance who is trying to
    > assist the widow of a guy who dabbled with computers and
    > installed some version of linux on a second computer.
    >
    > The guy died suddenly recently and the family would like to check
    > if there's anything important on the computer but haven't been
    > able to guess what the administrator password might be.
    >
    > Pretty vague kind of question, but what would need to be
    > specified (eg the flavour of linux used etc) by them to be able
    > to get realistic advice on whether they might have any luck in
    > searching the computer?
    >
    > My gut feel would be to suggest they give the idea away, but
    > maybe there are things they could try?


    If you can boot off the cd (may need adjustment in bios), then use knoppix
    to read the hard disk.

    With any OS, if you can reboot the PC from your choice of media (floppy or
    CD or memory stick) then you can bypass all the security permission stuff -
    that is, unless it uses an encrypted filesystem.

    Knoppix is easy to come by. Download it yourself (700MB) and burn to cd, or
    buy one for a few $ from Dick Smith or www.linuxshop.co.nz or similar.

    HTH

    Peter
     
    Peter, Nov 25, 2004
    #5
  6. Alex Axolotl

    Roger_Nickel Guest

    John S. wrote:
    > Hi,
    >
    > Trying to find some advice for an aquaintance who is trying to
    > assist the widow of a guy who dabbled with computers and
    > installed some version of linux on a second computer.
    >
    > The guy died suddenly recently and the family would like to check
    > if there's anything important on the computer but haven't been
    > able to guess what the administrator password might be.
    >
    > Pretty vague kind of question, but what would need to be
    > specified (eg the flavour of linux used etc) by them to be able
    > to get realistic advice on whether they might have any luck in
    > searching the computer?
    >
    > My gut feel would be to suggest they give the idea away, but
    > maybe there are things they could try?
    >
    > Any suggestions appreciated.
    >
    > Cheers, John S
    >
    >
    >

    Get a Knoppix/Xandros CD from Dick Smith Electronics. This is a bootable
    CD which runs out of a virtual disk drive in the memory of the computer
    without altering the contents of the hard disk. Use it to boot the
    computer into Linux.It will automatically mount all of the linux
    partitions ready for browsing from the GUI. partition labels on the KDE
    desktop will be something like "hda1", "hda2", "hdb1".
     
    Roger_Nickel, Nov 25, 2004
    #6
  7. In article <> in nz.comp on Thu, 25
    Nov 2004 07:57:15 GMT, John S. <> says...
    > Hi,
    >
    > Trying to find some advice for an aquaintance who is trying to
    > assist the widow of a guy who dabbled with computers and
    > installed some version of linux on a second computer.
    >
    > The guy died suddenly recently and the family would like to check
    > if there's anything important on the computer but haven't been
    > able to guess what the administrator password might be.


    I always used password
    LOL
     
    Patrick Dunford, Nov 26, 2004
    #7
  8. Alex Axolotl

    John S. Guest

    (John S.) wrote:

    >Hi,
    >
    >Trying to find some advice for an aquaintance who is trying to
    >assist the widow of a guy who dabbled with computers and
    >installed some version of linux on a second computer.
    >
    >The guy died suddenly recently and the family would like to check
    >if there's anything important on the computer but haven't been
    >able to guess what the administrator password might be.

    snip

    Just want to say thanks for the prompt suggestions made.

    (Alex, Rick, Daniel, Peter, Roger, Patrick)

    The idea of using Knoppix or similar looks good if they can't
    manage the command line typing at the bash prompt.

    However, what if the machine can't boot from CD?

    Can you somehow make a boot floppy for linux and then have it
    pass control to the CD drive (might not have expressed the idea
    technically very well but hope you know what I mean)?

    Also took note of another post which seems to be referring to my
    request "(so you've just died and some bugger comes along)"

    Guess that's fair comment and will pass it along, together with
    the suggestions made.

    I won't get to see the computer in question - it's hundreds of km
    away.

    Thanks again,

    Cheers,

    1John S
     
    John S., Nov 26, 2004
    #8
  9. Alex Axolotl

    Alex Axolotl Guest

    John S. wrote:
    > (John S.) wrote:
    >
    >
    >>Hi,
    >>
    >>Trying to find some advice for an aquaintance who is trying to
    >>assist the widow of a guy who dabbled with computers and
    >>installed some version of linux on a second computer.
    >>
    >>The guy died suddenly recently and the family would like to check
    >>if there's anything important on the computer but haven't been
    >>able to guess what the administrator password might be.

    >
    > snip
    >
    > Just want to say thanks for the prompt suggestions made.
    >
    > (Alex, Rick, Daniel, Peter, Roger, Patrick)
    >
    > The idea of using Knoppix or similar looks good if they can't
    > manage the command line typing at the bash prompt.
    >
    > However, what if the machine can't boot from CD?
    >
    > Can you somehow make a boot floppy for linux and then have it
    > pass control to the CD drive (might not have expressed the idea
    > technically very well but hope you know what I mean)?
    >
    > Also took note of another post which seems to be referring to my
    > request "(so you've just died and some bugger comes along)"
    >
    > Guess that's fair comment and will pass it along, together with
    > the suggestions made.
    >
    > I won't get to see the computer in question - it's hundreds of km
    > away.
    >
    > Thanks again,
    >
    > Cheers,
    >
    > 1John S
    >
    >
    >

    You can make a boot floppy for knoppix in Windows, here is a link for
    the howto
    http://www.knoppix.net/docs/index.php/BootFloppyHowTo
     
    Alex Axolotl, Nov 26, 2004
    #9
  10. In article <>,
    Alex Axolotl <> wrote:

    >When you see the boot: prompt, type linux single to enter single-user mode.


    Some distros (e.g. SuSE) still want the root password before they will
    let you login in single-user mode.
     
    Lawrence D¹Oliveiro, Nov 27, 2004
    #10
  11. Alex Axolotl

    Alex Axolotl Guest

    Lawrence D¹Oliveiro wrote:
    > In article <>,
    > Alex Axolotl <> wrote:
    >
    >
    >>When you see the boot: prompt, type linux single to enter single-user mode.

    >
    >
    > Some distros (e.g. SuSE) still want the root password before they will
    > let you login in single-user mode.


    Its always best to try the easy option first.
    Then you can move on to editing /etc/shadow with a bootdisk or using
    init=/bin/bash
     
    Alex Axolotl, Nov 28, 2004
    #11
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