password-free ubuntu login with facebrowser

Tim Abell · December 18, 2008

Reading time: 1 minute

If you trust everyone who has physical access to a pc (if not then you are encrypting your files, right?) then there seems little point in having to type a password just because more than one user uses the pc.

So here’s how to log in from the gdm “face browser” with a single click. Instructions tested with Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron and 8.10 Intrepid Ibex.

As root, create a new file containing the usernames of all the users you want be able to log in through gdm without entering a password:

sudo -i
echo 'username' >> /etc/gdm/nopassusers

now still as root modify the pam settings for gdm to check this file and allow this user in based on being in the list:

vi /etc/pam.d/gdm

and modify to contain the new listfile item

auth requisite
auth required readenv=1
auth required readenv=1 envfile=/etc/default/locale
**auth sufficient item=user sense=allow file=/etc/gdm/nopassusers onerr=fail** #add this line
@include common-auth
auth optional
@include common-account
session required
@include common-session
session optional auto_start
@include common-password

now simply restart gdm (or the whole machine) and try your new one-click login

/etc/init.d/gdm restart


This means the keyring isn’t unlocked, so you may have to type in your password anyway before your wireless connects.


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Suggest improvements: page source on github

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