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       passmass [ host1 host2 host3 ...  ]


       Passmass  changes a password on multiple machines.  If you
       have accounts on several machines that do not share  pass­
       word  databases,  Passmass  can  help you keep them all in
       sync.  This, in turn, will make it easier to  change  them
       more frequently.

       When  Passmass runs, it asks you for the old and new pass­
       words.  (If you  are  changing  root  passwords  and  have
       equivalencing,  the  old  password  is not used and may be

       Passmass understands the "usual" conventions.   Additional
       arguments  may  be used for tuning.  They affect all hosts
       which follow until another  argument  overrides  it.   For
       example,  if  you are known as "libes" on host1 and host2,
       but "don" on host3, you would say:

            passmass host1 host2 -user don host3

       Arguments are:

                  User  whose  password  will  be  changed.    By
                  default, the current user is used.

                  Use rlogin to access host.  (default)

                  Use slogin to access host.

                  Use telnet to access host.


                  Next  argument  is  a program to run to set the
                  password.  Default is "passwd".   Other  common
                  choices  are "yppasswd" and "set passwd" (e.g.,
                  VMS hosts).  A program name such  as  "password
                  fred"  can  be  used  to create entries for new
                  accounts (when run as root).

                  tionally prompted for a root password which  is
                  used  to  su after logging in.  root's password
                  is changed rather than  the  user's.   This  is
                  useful for hosts which do not allow root to log


       The best way to run Passmass is to put the  command  in  a
       one-line  shell  script  or alias.  Whenever you get a new
       account on a new machine, add the appropriate arguments to
       the command.  Then run it whenever you want to change your
       passwords on all the hosts.


       Using the same password on multiple hosts  carries  risks.
       In  particular, if the password can be stolen, then all of
       your accounts are at risk.  Thus, you should not use Pass­
       mass in situations where your password is visible, such as
       across a network which hackers are known to eavesdrop.

       On the other hand, if you have enough accounts  with  dif­
       ferent  passwords,  you may end up writing them down some­
       where - and that can be a security problem.  Funny  story:
       my college roommate had an 11"x13" piece of paper on which
       he had listed accounts and passwords all across the Inter­
       net.   This was several years worth of careful work and he
       carried it with him everywhere he went.  Well one day,  he
       forgot  to  remove  it from his jeans, and we found a per­
       fectly blank sheet of paper when we took out the wash  the
       following day!


       "Exploring  Expect:  A  Tcl-Based  Toolkit  for Automating
       Interactive Programs" by Don Libes, O'Reilly  and  Associ­
       ates, January 1995.


       Don Libes, National Institute of Standards and Technology

                          7 October 1993              PASSMASS(1)



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