*nix Documentation Project
·  Home
 +   man pages
·  Linux HOWTOs
·  FreeBSD Tips
·  *niX Forums

  man pages->HP-UX 11i man pages -> usermod (1m)              


 usermod(1M)                                                     usermod(1M)

 NAME    [Toc]    [Back]
      usermod - modify a user login on the system

 SYNOPSIS    [Toc]    [Back]
      usermod [-u uid [-o] ] [-g group] [-G group [, group...]]
           [-d dir [-m] ] [-s shell] [-c comment] [-f inactive]
           [-l new_logname] [-e expire]  login

 DESCRIPTION    [Toc]    [Back]
      The usermod command modifies a user login on the system by changing
      the appropriate login related files.

      The usermod command requires the login argument.  login is a new login
      name, specified as a string of printable characters.  It may not
      contain a colon (:) or a newline (\n).

    New Behavior    [Toc]    [Back]
      If the primary group of a user is modified, then the user name is not
      added to the primary group entry in /etc/group file.  However, if -G
      option is specified the user is added to the corresponding
      supplemental group.

    Options    [Toc]    [Back]
      The usermod command supports the following options:

           -u uid              Specifies the UID for the new user.  uid must
                               be a non-negative decimal integer less than
                               MAXUID as it is defined in the <param.h>
                               header file.

           -o                  Allows the UID to be non-unique (i.e., a

           -g group            Specifies the integer group ID or character
                               string name of an existing group.  This
                               redefines the primary group membership of the
                               new login.

           -G group            Specifies the integer group ID or character
                               string name of an existing group.  This
                               redefines the supplemental group memberships
                               of the new login.  Duplicates within group
                               with the -g and -G options are ignored.

           -d dir              Specifies the new home directory of the
                               login.  It defaults to base_dir/login, where
                               login is the new login and base_dir is the
                               base directory for new login home

 Hewlett-Packard Company            - 1 -   HP-UX 11i Version 2: August 2003

 usermod(1M)                                                     usermod(1M)

           -m                  Move the user's home directory to the
                               directory specified with the -d option.  If
                               the home directory exists, the directory must
                               have read and execute permission by group,
                               where group is the primary group of the

           -s shell            Specifies the full pathname of the login
                               shell.  The value of shell must be a valid
                               executable file.

           -c comment          Specifies the comment field present in the
                               /etc/passwd entry of this login.  This can be
                               any text string.  A short description of the
                               new login is suggested for this field.

           -f inactive         Specifies the maximum number of days of
                               continuous inactivity of the login before the
                               login is declared invalid.  Normal values are
                               positive integers, while a value of -1
                               defeats this status.

           -l new_logname      Specifies the new login name for the user.
                               It consists of a string of printable
                               characters that does not contain a colon (:)
                               or a newline (\n).

           -e expire           Specifies the date on which this login can no
                               longer be used.  After expire, no user will
                               be able to access this login.  This option is
                               used to create temporary logins.  expire,
                               which is a date, may be typed in any desired
                               format, except a Julian date.  For example, a
                               date may be entered as either of the

                                    July 13, 1993

                               A value of '''' defeats the expired date

      Unless enhanced security is installed, the -e and -f options are not
      supported and will return an error.

      A directory can be shared between the users belonging to the same
      group.  If the home directory is in unshared mode and a new user is
      allocated to that directory, then it will be put into shared mode by
      setting the permissions of that directory to 775 (i.e., includes the
      write permissions to the group as well).  Also, the directory which
      will be shared should have read and execute permissions for the group.

 Hewlett-Packard Company            - 2 -   HP-UX 11i Version 2: August 2003

 usermod(1M)                                                     usermod(1M)

      In the event where a directory is shared by users of the same group
      and the owner of that directory is modified, then the ownership of
      that directory is propagated to the next user who is sharing that
      directory.  The new owner is determined by looking at the order in
      which the users sharing this directory are added to the /etc/passwd
      file.  If there is only one user remaining then the directory is
      brought back to unshared mode by resetting the permissions to 755 from

      If a directory is shared by users, then one cannot change the primary
      group of any of these users unless the home directory of that user is
      also changed.

    Networking Features    [Toc]    [Back]
      The usermod command is aware of NIS user and group entries.  Only
      local users and groups may be modified with this command.  Attempts to
      modify an NIS user or group will result in an error.  NIS users and
      groups must be administered from the NIS server.  This command may
      fail with the error

           login x does not exist

      (return value 6) if the user specified is an NIS user (see passwd(4)).
      However, NIS users are checked when verifying uniqueness of the new
      UID or the new user name.  Also, the error

           Cannot modify /etc/group file, /etc/passwd was modified

      (return value 10) may be returned if a group specified with either the
      -g option or the -G option is an NIS group (see group(4)).

    NFS    [Toc]    [Back]
      Errors may occur with the -m option if either the source or the target
      directory is within an NFS mounted file system that does not allow
      root privileges across the NFS mount and the directory or files within
      the directory do not have sufficient permissions.

 RETURN VALUE    [Toc]    [Back]
      usermod exits with one of the following values:

           0    Successful completion.

           2    Invalid command syntax.

           3    Invalid argument supplied to an option.

           4    uid is not unique (when -o is not used).

           6    The login to be modified or the group specified with the -g
                option does not exist.

 Hewlett-Packard Company            - 3 -   HP-UX 11i Version 2: August 2003

 usermod(1M)                                                     usermod(1M)

           8    The login to be modified is in use.

           9    new_logname is not unique.

           10   Cannot modify the /etc/group file.  The other parts of the
                update request will be performed.

           11   There is insufficient space to move the home directory (with
                the -m option).  The other parts of the update request will
                be performed.

           12   Unable to complete the move of the home directory to the new
                home directory.

           13   Unable to open /etc/ptmp file, or /etc/passwd file is nonexistent.

           14   /etc/passwd file or /etc/ptmp file busy. Another command may
                be modifying the /etc/passwd file.

           15   Cannot modify the entry in the /etc/passwd file.

 EXAMPLES    [Toc]    [Back]
      Change otto's primary group to staff.

           usermod -g staff otto

      Change otto's user ID to 333 and change the login name to bob.

           usermod -u 333 -l bob otto

 WARNINGS    [Toc]    [Back]
      As many users may try to write the /etc/passwd file simultaneously, a
      passwd locking mechanism was devised.  If this locking fails after
      subsequent retrying, usermod terminates.

      While modifying the user login, the username is not added to the
      primary group entry in the /etc/group file.  If a supplemental group
      is specified, the user is added to the supplemental group.  If the
      size of a group entry in /etc/group file exceeds LINE_MAX limit, a new
      entry of the same group is created and a warning message is issued.

 FILES    [Toc]    [Back]
      /etc/shadow         Shadow Password file
      /etc/passwd         System Password file
      /etc/group          System group file
      /etc/ptmp           Lock file used when updating password file

 SEE ALSO    [Toc]    [Back]
      passwd(1), users(1), groupadd(1M), groupdel(1M), groupmod(1M),
      logins(1M), useradd(1M), userdel(1M), pwconv(1M), group(4), shadow(4).

 Hewlett-Packard Company            - 4 -   HP-UX 11i Version 2: August 2003

 usermod(1M)                                                     usermod(1M)

      usermod: SVID3

 Hewlett-Packard Company            - 5 -   HP-UX 11i Version 2: August 2003
[ Back ]
 Similar pages
Name OS Title
usermod OpenBSD modify user login information
useradd HP-UX add a new user login to the system
userdel HP-UX delete a user login from the system
user OpenBSD manage user login information on the system
logins HP-UX display system and user login data
userdel Tru64 Deletes a user login account from the system.
EZsetup IRIX login for basic system setup and user environment configuration
usermod Linux Modify a user account
snkinit OpenBSD modify or add user in ActivCard, CRYPTOCard,
modifyUserAccount IRIX modify an existing user account
Copyright © 2004-2005 DeniX Solutions SRL
newsletter delivery service