[clug] Spreading the joy!

Bob Edwards Robert.Edwards at anu.edu.au
Tue Oct 26 23:23:57 GMT 2004

Well, I came into work yesterday to continue configuring a machine I had
been remotely installing late the night before. Couldn't log in as root;
not on the console, not over ssh, not using "su" (I could log in as me).

Turns out that /etc/shadow had gone walkies (we use LDAP for normal user
authentication). This machine has no CD or floppy, so couldn't boot up my
favourite rescue disk. Contemplated a network boot until Steve reminded
me that I could just pass the kernel "init=/bin/sh" and get a root prompt
that way.

In hindsight, I could probably have also gotten away with creating a temp
root user in LDAP.

Still don't know how I managed to obliterate /etc/shadow.

Bob Edwards.

Rob McAuliffe wrote:
> Anyone else done anything chuckle-worthy?
> I once wrote a floppy with dd, didn't quite get the command right,
> though:
> dd if=./floppy.img of=/dev/hda
> Funny thing is, the machine kept running for about a week before I got
> around to re-installing...  of course there's always that risk that the
> power will go out...
> (teach me not to do everything as root...)
> Rob
> On Tue, 2004-10-26 at 22:13, Darren Freeman wrote:
>>Hi all,
>>just thought you'd get a chuckle out of the horrendously brain-dead
>>thing I did today.
>>At a root prompt, working dir was /usr and I typed:
>>rm -Rf bin
>>Now, let it be known, I thought I was in /usr/local =)
>>Search for the "undo" key! THERE'S NO UNDO KEY!!
>>Not a very functional system at that point, facial expression changed,
>>internal curse words were uttered.
>>Lucky I had a year-old backup. Lucky the system hadn't been used in a
>>year too ;) Couldn't rsync, couldn't do much of anything but burn a
>>rewritable with the backup and carry it over. Did I mention the machine
>>lives in a cleanroom :)
>>Have fun,

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