setting a random password with PAM API

Dag-Erling Smørgrav des at
Wed Jan 5 11:02:28 UTC 2011

"Christopher J. Ruwe" <cjr at> writes:
> I am trying to implement the feature to set a random password like in
> BSD "pw usermod -W" in the Solaris passwd. Regrettably, I have not
> found or perhaps not understood the PAM API documentation on how to
> _inject a given string_ into the change-auth-token function
> pam_chauthtok(...), which always jumps in an interactive pw-changing
> loop.

There is no reliable way to do that.  You don't even know that there is
such a thing as a password.

Dag-Erling Smørgrav - des at

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