Category: Linux

Restricting Linux Logins to Specified Group

If you have linux boxes that authenticate over ldap but want logins for specific boxes to be restricted to a particular group, there is a simple way to achieve this.

Firstly, create a new file called /etc/group.login.allow (it can be called anything – you just need to update the line below to reflect the name)

In this file, pop in all the groups that should be able to login


Edit /etc/pam.d/common-auth (in ubuntu), it might be called /etc/pam.d/system-auth or something else very similar. At the top of the file (or at least above other entries, add the following line:

auth required onerr=fail item=group sense=allow file=/etc/group.login.allow

For the record, found this little tidbit over at the centos forums

Looping from the bash commandline [1113]

I figured this out the other day from idle curiosity. There is occassionally the need to have a never ending loop to be executed directly from the bash commandline instead of writing a script.

I used this to run sl (yes sl, not ls – try it – I love it) repeatedly.

$ while true; do ; done

for example

$ while true; do sl; done

Bear in mind that this loop is infinite and there is no way to cancel out of it except to kill of the terminal.

Linux bulk search and replace

Doing a bulk search and replace across a set of files is actually surprisingly easy. sed is the key. It has a flag – i that will modify the files passed to it in-place.

$ sed -e 's/TextToFind/Replacement/' -i file1 file2 file3

Tie this power with either grep -l . [Thanks to Steve for pointing out a mistake in the following, now corrected]

$ grep -l TextToFind * |xargs sed -e 's/TextToFind/Replacement/' -i

or find

$ find . -exec sed -e 's/TextToFind/Replacement' -i {} ;

If there are multiple changes you want to make, just put them all into a file and pass it in via the -f flag.

file: replacements.patterns


and the command, using find to iterate through all files in the current directory and subdirectories.

find . -exec sed -f replacements.patterns -i {} ;

et voila – hope it helps.

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