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Linux Ubuntu 6 Login Workaround needed.

Posted on 2011-09-07
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Last Modified: 2012-08-13
Discovered past IT Admin setup Ubuntu 6 on VMWare virtual box. It was setup to boot to command line login but they left no record of usename/password. I'd rather just reformat/reinstall a newer version, but, there is a working website and database that we cannot lose or backup. I need advice on how to get into this "guest" vm box and ubuntu os. Any help and guidance would be appreciated.
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Question by:primeradmin
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Papertrip earned 250 total points
ID: 36500638
Easily fixed.

1.  Get on the console and reboot the VM.
2.  When the GRUB boot menu pops up, hit 'e' for edit, goto the kernel line, and add the word 'single' to the end then hit enter (or esc I can't recall).  Go back to the main GRUB menu and hit 'b' on the edited line to boot with those parameters.
3.  Once it boots, login as root then type 'passwd' to reset root's password.
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by:Papertrip
ID: 36500641
I recall that VM's might scroll that boot menu too quickly for you to type anything -- there is a setting someplace in the options for each VM to delay some part of the boot process, and I *think* it's listed in milliseconds but it's been a few years...

Either way there is some setting someplace that will allow you to extend that window so you can actually type :)
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by:Papertrip
ID: 36500645
Oh missed a part... what to do after your change your pass.

Since the box is already "down" at this point, I suggest just another reboot to make sure everything is nice and clean.
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by:Papertrip
ID: 36514879
@primeradmin did this solution work for you?
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by:primeradmin
primeradmin earned 0 total points
ID: 36516961
Papertrip, while your advice didn't directly solve my issue since some detailed steps were missing that I had to investigate elsewhere, such as pressing 'esc' at the grub screen then selecting the correct 'kernel' line before even being able to use your step of using 'e' to edit, your advice did start me looking in the right direction. Ultimately, I had to use a different scipt line in the kernel command changing 'ro' to 'rw init=/bin/bash' at the end of the line. That said I will award partial points for helping me look for the right direction.

I will be posting a question concerning the fact that although I can now login, I cannot locate the right commands that install or activate a GUI instead of this pain-in-the-butt command line stuff. Everything I've tried, as recommended on several different forums and even the ubuntu site have not worked, a second part fails to start to install gnome or some other GUI. It gets half way then asks if I want to continue then fails to load a series of ip-based services. I've run checks that prove I have working network/internet access but the addresses don't seem to work for the gnome command. I may have to ultimately reinstall or upgrade anyway.

Thanks.
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Author Closing Comment

by:primeradmin
ID: 36541410
Answer provided a direction to go in but not the solution.
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