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Re: Passwordless root shell is offered when boot problem occurs.

Thank You for Your time and answer, Joel:

>Recently had fun with Fedora, when it didn't like the way I specified
>my HDs, it would drop me into the ctrl-d prompt, but I couldn't go
>anywhere beyond that. Any key I pressed, including ctrl-d, would cycle
>me another ctrl-d prompt.

When I had the prompt - I had no problems w/ getting root shell since I
correctly entered its password. But situations probably differ in what
has been mounted - root or of secondary importance (like /usr)

If / partition was absent/not-mounted then, what did provide the prompt itself - the linux (kernel)? Were
there any parameters passed to kernel at boot (in grub or whatever loader You used)?

>There's a half-fixed bug on that still over there, but I'm not
>interested in testing any further, so I simply changed my fstab to
>spec the drives by UUIDs. (I always forget the command for getting the
>UUID from the drive. These days, I list /dev/disk/something and use
>the extra information. I think that's the same on Debian. Yeah, I'm
>logged in on Fedora right now.) Similar issues, different symptoms,
>I'm thinking. It'd try to offer my the password prompt, but it wasn't
>mounting the root drive, so there was no /bin/passwd to run, and it
>just exceptioned it's way back to the ctrl-d prompt.

Yea, it seems logical.

>Anyway, the question I'd ask is whether you can force this behavior if
>your configuration is correct. (By current definition of correct,
>which appears to be to refrain from trying to mount /dev/sdb4 and such
>in your fstab, and mount UUID=long-hex-string instead. Or
>/dev/mapper/vol-group for LVM volumes.) And, I guess you imply that
>you can mount your drives in this password-less shell, but is that the

Yes, the drives are mounted OK. I just skipped one - of secondary
importance to boot process when ended up w/ password-less root shell -
I was amazed - how easily it is for Debian to get the shell - just boot
it skipping a single partition and You are there - whole the system is
under Your control - no need even to take off the drive or boot own OS
from other media!

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