HELP! Is that possible "creating a user named root but acturally not the administrator root"

Bob Johnson fbsdlists at
Thu Feb 11 19:32:04 UTC 2010

On 2/11/10, Jerry McAllister <jerrymc at> wrote:
> On Thu, Feb 11, 2010 at 01:58:07PM -0500, Bob Johnson wrote:
>> On 2/11/10, Robert Huff <roberthuff at> wrote:
>> >
>> > Lin Taosheng writes:
>> >
>> >>      Is that possible to implementated?
>> >
>> Yes, use vipw to edit the password file. Add another username that is
>> UID zero. The name "toor" is actually already there as an example of
>> how to do that, but it is disabled because it has a "*" in the
>> password field. After the new username is tested and you know it
>> works, use vipw to replace the password field for "root" to an "*".
>> Then root will still exist, but it will not be possible to log in to
>> it. You could also delete the entire line for "root", but that gets
>> farther into unusual territory and increases the chance that you will
>> break something else by doing so.
> If I take what the OP said literally, you are answering backwards.
> The OP asked if it is possible to name a different account root - eg
> one that is not UID 0.    You are answering that it is possible to
> give an account other than root a UID 0.
> Now, the OP may have meant to ask what you are answering and just
> got it mixed up.   But, that was not the way the question went.

Oops. Rats. When I started my reply I had it right, but by the time I
finished I had confused myself. Thanks.

Anyway, it's possible, but in practice it probably won't work right,
and doesn't do much for security anyway.

- Bob

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