Strange WHOAMI Problem

Strange WHOAMI Problem

Post by Chris Schmid » Sat, 14 Jun 1997 04:00:00



Well, at least I call it strange, I have never gotten an error like this
before.  This is the error I get when I do "whoami":

whoami: no login associated with uid 12018.

The reason that this is happening I cannot say for sure, all I know is
that some unix-illiterate (sp?) person is managing this lab now.  In the
two years that I managed it, (I have sinced moved on to better labs) I
never had any problems like this guy has.  He doesn't even know how to
use vi.  He had screwed up the password file, I fixed it, well at least
all that I could see that was wrong with it anyway.

Anyhow, this is on an old Sparc 2 running SunOS 4.1.3_U1.

I think this could be the problem, but I am not sure yet:

-rw-------  1 0            8994 Jun 13 00:49 passwd  

It seems that all of the ownerships have dissapered as well, all files
now seem to be owned by the user id, so I am thinking the permissions on
the password file are causing this, but I am not sure, I don't mess with
Solaris 1 anymore, so maybe someone who does can help this poor guy that
took my place.

Also, the chown command seems to have disapeared, do any of you know
where it was located in the stock install?

Chris

 
 
 

Strange WHOAMI Problem

Post by miSOFT Enginee » Thu, 19 Jun 1997 04:00:00



> Well, at least I call it strange, I have never gotten an error like this
> before.  This is the error I get when I do "whoami":

> whoami: no login associated with uid 12018.

> The reason that this is happening I cannot say for sure, all I know is
> that some unix-illiterate (sp?) person is managing this lab now.  In the
> two years that I managed it, (I have sinced moved on to better labs) I
> never had any problems like this guy has.  He doesn't even know how to
> use vi.  He had screwed up the password file, I fixed it, well at least
> all that I could see that was wrong with it anyway.

> Anyhow, this is on an old Sparc 2 running SunOS 4.1.3_U1.

> I think this could be the problem, but I am not sure yet:

> -rw-------  1 0            8994 Jun 13 00:49 passwd

> It seems that all of the ownerships have dissapered as well, all files
> now seem to be owned by the user id, so I am thinking the permissions on
> the password file are causing this, but I am not sure, I don't mess with
> Solaris 1 anymore, so maybe someone who does can help this poor guy that
> took my place.

> Also, the chown command seems to have disapeared, do any of you know
> where it was located in the stock install?

> Chris

My guess is this some top-notch Uber-luser you got there and he thought
he was "implementing a security feature"...[1]
The /etc/passwd file needs to be world readable for many programs to
work properly. "whoami" is failing because it can't read the passwd file
to match a name to the uid.

[1] Tongue firmly planted in cheek. :-)

Mike
--
***use my first name at "misoft.com" for replies***              
Mike Couvillion, Sun Enterprise Systems Engineer         O-
miSOFT, A Division of Metters Ind.            http://www.misoft.com
"SCSI is *not* magic. There are fundamental technical reasons why
it is necessary to sacrifice a young goat to your SCSI chain now
and then. In a pinch a salesdroid will do as well."

 
 
 

1. strange message from 'whoami'

 I'm on a Sun 4/390 running SunOS 4.0.3. Earlier this morning, I
began to notice some peculiarities on the system which eventually
led me to type in the command 'whoami'. The response was the terse
reply, 'Intruder alert.'.

 It turns out a priveledged 'somebody' in the lab had copied a file
over /etc/passwd. Fortunately, we keep a current copy online, so no
great damage was done.

 But now I'm curious about where this message originates from. I did
a 'strings' on /usr/ucb/whoami, /usr/etc/inetd, and everything in
/usr/lib, but couldn't find it.

 Does anybody know the orgins and background of this message? I'm
considering suing somebody over all the coffee I spilled on my
shirt.  :(          

(just joking, please, no lawyers...)

glenn

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