I'm trying to create a guest account in arch linux that only allows the user to use simple applications like firefox. I do not want them to have access to programs like terminal or grub-customizer etc. How would I do this?

  • Depending on your user interface requirements, you may want "kiosk mode", where by default the system automatically logs in a user that can only run a web browser. A good way to do this (for Ubuntu) is in askubuntu.com/questions/124759/…. The details for Arch are probably similar. – Mark Plotnick Sep 24 '14 at 15:58
  • Well what I'm trying to do is setup a dummy account on my laptop which launches a reverse ssh tunnel on login. I've had a laptop stolen so I'm pretty paranoid now. I'd like the dummy account to have as little access as possible. I've hidden my main login on gdm. – Painguy Sep 24 '14 at 18:56
  • Search for kiosk questions. This question may well be a duplicate. – Gilles Sep 24 '14 at 22:41
  • What is your desktop environment? If gnome I will be able to point you in the right direction. I have literally done just the same except the ssh-tunnel which is a great idea! I have collected quite a bit of information on said subject :-) – cxou May 24 '15 at 23:39

In the case of gnome - please use the following as a support in getting where you want to be.

Security Disable access to any command line


Ensure that the installation works as wanted before activating this
or ensure that one can log in as root with the right password. Preferably disable all access to command-line completely. Thus devices cannot be altered once installed except through chroot.

Disable user list at login screen

How to disable the user list on GDM3 login screen?'

Disable repartitioning for the user


Disable altering settings


Disable the user from saving files:


Disable printing (such as from firefox or libreoffice)


No keyring package installed

You can also lockdown mozilla firefox settings - or at least you used to. Try googling the subject.


Yes basically the howto's from Ubuntu or Mint are the same way to go in Arch. Arch is more of a hands on development system. Not really intended as a stable release for a Kiosk type account. But it can be done. Get your chmod commands right and adduser and passwd settings right and test them.

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