Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Edubuntu LTSP User locked out Issue

Some of the servers I manage are Edubuntu 8.04 servers and for this post I would like to share a very common problem that I encounter almost daily and how to solve it.
We all know that users NEVER do what the server admin tells them. When you have a lot of users that are logged in to an LTSP server from thin client A and then they log in from thin client B, and then try to work with a browser like Firefox, they cannot. To make matters worse, if the server crashes or restarts, that user (or all users logged in) may get locked out of the LTSP environment.
After a lot of trials and errors, I found a nice little script that helps me kill every process of a specific user.
First create a file anywhere
sudo pico test.sh
Then paste this code:

MYNAME=`basename $0`
if [ ! -n "$USER" ]
echo "Usage: $MYNAME username" >&2
exit 1
elif ! grep "^$USER:" /etc/passwd >/dev/null
echo "User $USER does not exist!" >&2
exit 2
while [ `ps -U$USER | grep -v PID | wc -l` -gt 0 ]
PIDS=`ps -U$USER | grep -v PID | awk '{print $1}'`
echo "Killing " `echo $PIDS | wc -w` " processes for user $USER."
for PID in $PIDS
kill -9 $PID 2>&1 >/dev/null
echo "User $USER has 0 processes still running."

Exit and save the file. To run the file

sudo test.sh username
Replace username with the login of the user that is locked out. Of course you need to make this file executable first.

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