[lug] Newbie admin question

J. Wayde Allen wallen at lug.boulder.co.us
Wed Mar 21 09:47:37 MST 2001

On Wed, 21 Mar 2001, Glenn Murray wrote:

> How do you change the name of a user?  
> Can you do it naively be editing /etc/passwd

Editing /etc/passwd , /etc/group should be all you'd need to do.  You'll
probably also want to rename the home directory whick will require editing
the pointer in the /etc/passwd file accordingly too.  Off the top of my
head, I can't think of anything else that would need to change.

> changing file ownerships, 

File ownerships are keyed to the user and group ID numbers.  The
/etc/passwd and /etc/group files are what link the user and group names to
these numbers.  If you change the names in those files and leave the ID
numbers the same, there shouldn't be anything to change as far as file
ownerships go.

> or is this a Bad Idea?

No, what you've described is basically how it is done.

>  Must you start over with a new user name?


- Wayde
  (wallen at lug.boulder.co.us)

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