If I switch to a tty, say tty3, it asks me for a username and then for the corresponding password.

How can I achieve, that (only on tty3) it asks me just for a password for a pre-defined user name (say myuser) and mentions the username, for example password for myuser? So I don't need to type the username but just the password on that tty.

I am using ubuntu 18.04 which uses systemd.


You'll need to add which distribution you are using, because different distributions probably run getty in different ways.

For sysvinit, it is programmed in /etc/inittab, where you may find a line like the following:

3:23:respawn:/sbin/getty 38400 tty3

You would change that line into something like the following:

3:23:respawn:/sbin/getty -n -o ferdinand 38400 tty3

So as to cause getty to run /bin/login -- ferdinand, i.e., to prime it with the user name "ferdinand".

As documented on man getty, the -n option tells it to not prompt for username, and the -o ferdinand option tells it to add "ferdinand" to its login sub command line.

I would think the options work the same in other distributions, but the way of starting getty for tty3 may well be different and in particular not be using /etc/inittab.


The systemd equivalent to the answer by Ralph Rönnquist is to type

sudo EDITOR=/usr/bin/vi systemctl edit getty@tty3

(or your favourite editor). This gives you a temporary file in which you enter the lines:

 ExecStart=-/sbin/agetty -n -o ferdinand %I

and exit the editor. It will create the file /etc/systemd/system/getty@tty3.service.d/override.conf. Note, you need the first ExecStart= line to reset the list of commands to execute back to empty. You can then enable and start the Unit as usual:

sudo systemctl enable getty@tty3
sudo systemctl start getty@tty3

The first creates a link in /etc/systemd/system/getty.target.wants/ for the future. See archlinux.

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