I've recently set up an SFTP server for a number of people and their projects. For security reasons, people were given system accounts so they have no SSH access (we don't want them to accidentally modify files, install anything, or run programs; accounts were created with the command adduser --system --no-create-home USERNAME). One consequence of this is that they are unable to change or set their passwords on their own. Essentially they have to email me the password they want, or they have to physically be in the same room so I can SSH in and they can use my computer to change their password.

Neither is a great option for us. So is there anything I've missed? Is there some way a user with a system account can manage their own password remotely? Alternatively, was it a bad idea to set them up as system accounts? I'd rather not change the setup right now, but if there's a better option I am able to.

  • 1
    Possibly related, depending on whether it's FTP or SFTP that's been implemented, Change SFTP password without ssh login allowed. – roaima Sep 12 at 21:38
  • @roaima it's set up to use SFTP. They can connect using a client like filezilla or via the sftp command, they cannot connect via the ssh command. Thanks for that link though, I didn't realize I could disable all commands but passwd. That's an interesting option to consider. – DaveTheScientist Sep 12 at 21:50

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