Subject: Re: vipw creating homes
To: Chris G. Demetriou <>
From: Greywolf <>
List: tech-userlevel
Date: 03/06/2001 15:38:33
On 6 Mar 2001, Chris G. Demetriou wrote:

# I was looking at 1.5.  Indeed, in -current it seems to support a '-d'
# argument... to specify the location of the password file/db.
# Still:
# * vipw doesn't provide anything even related to the functionality you
# describe,
# * it's not clear that the functionality you desire is even generally
# desirable, and
# * there are other tools which do somewhat similar things, and if a
# (limited) version of what you're suggesting belongs anywhere, it
# belongs there.


I believe that what Chris says is correct -- aside from just not scaling
well, it really doesn't belong in vipw.  The only things vipw is there
for are consistency checks (syntax, and making sure that root's shell
exists at the time the edit is done) and locking (to make sure that,
while you're editing the passwd file, nobody else is changing their
passwd/finger information at the same time).  If those weren't
considerations to begin with, we'd all be doing the stoopid thing of
just calling ${EDITOR} /etc/master.passwd and being done with it.

[oh, yes -- vipw also does the nicety of regenerating /etc/passwd
from /etc/master.passwd, and generating pwd.db and mpwd.db from them.]

# cgd

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