Mailinglist Archive: opensuse (3349 mails)

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Re: [SLE] Root password corrupt?
  • From: Anders Johansson <andjoh@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 30 May 2005 05:35:26 +0200
  • Message-id: <200505300535.26443.andjoh@xxxxxxxxxx>
On Monday 30 May 2005 05:22, george wrote:
> I have two users...using the (only) KDE GUI. Both work fine. When I go to
> control center, either user tries to make changes that require a su login
> (admin or root password), the password doesn't work. It has worked fine for
> the past few months. In the past, I did a google for changing the password
> didn't find much that I could do (somewhat CLI challenged, but I'm in
> therapy) ;)
> Anyway, I just did a reinstall... My boot drive isn't the shared drives, so
> it isn't that big a deal. The first time I just figured I forgot it or
> something. (I really didn't think so, but...) Then the second install, I
> made it something easy. That worked for a few months, then the same thing
> as now. I did a reinstall. This time I wrote the password down ON the box.
> (still simple) this worked for a few months, till now. I donĀ¹t' remember if
> I could ssh in via my OSX box with this latest build or not. (but yes, in
> the past I could)

Hm. So you haven't actually tried logging in normally with root, it's just
with 'su'?

When this happens, try logging in as root from the login prompt. If that
works, I guess 'su' has lost its suid bit. If you do

ls -l /bin/su

do you get

-rwsr-xr-x 1 root root 23296 2005-03-19 21:28 /bin/su

(the relevant bit is the s in rws at the beginning)

Do you perhaps set your security level up?

The thing is, if /bin/su loses its suid bit, it will always tell you the
password is wrong, because it simply can't check if it's right or not.

A normal login from the login prompt should still work though, so you can log
in and reset the suid bit with

chmod u+s /bin/su

if this really is the problem. And if it is, the question is why it happens.
My money is on the security level. If it's set too high (paranoid), the suid
bits will be stripped off everything

If this isn't the problem, and you can't even log in from the login screen,
then I'm at a loss. The first thing then would be to reset the root password
the way others have described, and then investigate what has happened to the
original root password.

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