Resetting and accessing Droplet password

December 1, 2014 1.6k views

If I reset my password will this update the passwd file?

The reason that I ask is because I foolishly edited my /etc/passwd manually and in the process deleted the root user line. Now I am unable to use sudo to edit the file.

My solution is to purchase a new droplet and replicate my existing server. However I am not sure if this is truly necessary. I am fairly new to server admin, hence the foolish behaviour of manually editing my passwd file! Any info would be greatly appreciated.

2 Answers

No, resetting the password updated /etc/shadow where the password is actually stored.

Follow Attempt Recovery with a Recovery ISO | How To Recover from File System Corruption Using Fsck and a Recovery ISO | DigitalOcean. You can skip the Set Up Networking in the Recovery Environment section.

Once you’ve mounted the filesystem, open /mnt/etc/passwd in nano or any other editor, and add the following line at the beginning:


Then, save the file, unmount the filesystem, and power off the droplet:

cd /
umount /mnt

Finally, reply to the support ticket to remove the ISO image from the droplet so you can then boot your droplet normally.

by Justin Ellingwood
Linux includes a filesystem checking utility called fsck that can be used to recover your system in cases of corruption. In this guide, we will discuss how to attempt to recover your filesystem if there are filesystem issues by using the fsck kernel and a recovery ISO.
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