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#1 2017-06-19 23:17:14

New Member
Registered: 2017-06-19
Posts: 2

Recovering Username & Password


I don't remember the username and the password any more.

I am particularly concerned about the username, as I remember part of the password and just might be able to figure it out, but the username, which used to auto-populate, was accidentally deleted.

Following this forum's instructions, I changed the root's password, but I can't log in as root, for as soon as I enter "Root" in the username field and its new password, it just reloads the sign in page, not even telling me that I am not granted access or that there is anything invalid about the credentials.

Please help me.

Thank you,



#2 2017-06-20 02:27:08

From: Nagoya, Japan
Registered: 2015-09-09
Posts: 7,910

Re: Recovering Username & Password

Hi John smile
You cannot login to an X session as root, as far as I know, only a tty.
But you can discover your own username, or at least a list of the users on your system. Do you have a live linux system on a usb stick or CD? (eg the bunsenlabs iso)
If so, boot up a live session, open the file manager, and mount the hard disk. (If you're using Thunar it should appear in the list on the left.) Look in the mount path/home directory. You'll see some directories named after the users on your system. One of them should be yours.

On the other hand, if you haven't yet made many changes or imported much important data to your system, it might be easier just to re-install it.

BTW where does this forum instruct you to change root's password? That's not usually necessary, and only done for special reasons by more advanced users.

...elevator in the Brain Hotel, broken down but just as well...
( a boring Japan blog (currently paused), idle Twitterings and GitStuff )

Introduction to the Bunsenlabs Lithium Desktop


#3 2017-06-20 05:48:53

Registered: 2015-09-29
Posts: 5,447

Re: Recovering Username & Password

GAM055, this problem is fixable.
but, a warning: be very very careful how you do it, you have a real chance of making things worse instead of better!
find a good, up-to-date tutorial.
i just tried this search.

BL quote proposals to this thread please.


#4 2017-06-20 07:06:37

From: London
Registered: 2015-09-29
Posts: 8,759

Re: Recovering Username & Password

Press "e" with the BunsenLabs GRUB menu highlighted then add this to the end of the line that starts with "linux":


Then press <Ctrl>+x (at the same time) to boot to a (passwordless) root shell.

Remount the root filesystem so you can change it:

mount -o remount,rw /

Then find the username:

ls /home

Then change the password for that user (replace $user with the actual username):

passwd $user

Then reboot and log in as normal smile

BunsenLabs has no root password set and you should probably leave it that way unless you know why not to.

“Et ignotas animum dimittit in artes.” — Ovid, Metamorphoses, VIII., 18.

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#5 2017-06-20 10:49:00

Registered: 2017-01-03
Posts: 642

Re: Recovering Username & Password

Slightly off topic but one can create a usb key to login using pamusb.

One could keep it as a back up in case of forgotten user name or password. Usually one should be able to remember the user name, have a pamusb as back up you can insert it before booting up and at login, enter user name and gain access to the system.

You could create hard to remember password and log in with the pamusb, keeping your password backed up elsewhere of course.

I just use the default config, but there are alternatives.

Pamusb would only be for login managers like lightdm, gdm, etc.

Last edited by Steve (2017-06-20 10:53:41)


#6 2017-06-25 11:11:55

New Member
Registered: 2017-06-19
Posts: 2

Re: Recovering Username & Password

THANK YOU everyone!

I did  follow the exact steps that Head_on_a_Stick specified, and it worked!
- - -

John Raff, I found the article about resetting the root password at:

Thank you all!!!


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