Red Hat Bugzilla – Bug 436370
mingetty doesn't allow time to read error messages
Last modified: 2014-03-16 23:12:38 EDT
Description of problem:
I teach Linux classes where students perform advanced PAM lab exercises. One
very common issue we run into is mingetty clearing the screen to fast to read
any error messages such as "Account is expired".
You can tell that some sort of error message is displayed on the screen, but
there is no time to read it.
My suggestion to remedy this problem is to use the --delay option on the
mingetty lines, for example:
# Run gettys in standard runlevels
1:2345:respawn:/sbin/mingetty --delay=5 tty1
2:2345:respawn:/sbin/mingetty --delay=5 tty2
3:2345:respawn:/sbin/mingetty --delay=5 tty3
4:2345:respawn:/sbin/mingetty --delay=5 tty4
5:2345:respawn:/sbin/mingetty --delay=5 tty5
6:2345:respawn:/sbin/mingetty --delay=5 tty6
Or maybe just on the first tty. For what it's worth, SUSE avoids this problem by
using --noclear on tty1. That would also be an acceptable solution.
It would be great if a solution could be selected and make it in before the
March 11th freeze.
I'm not sure exposing these errors to the user is worthwhile - after all, only
the admin can fix them at this point, and these errors are in the logs.
I'm requesting this for the benefit of the admins not the users. The types of
error messages are varied, not just "account expired". Any PAM typos will cause
various pam modules to print errors on the screen. These are typos caused by the
For the admins (or the users), being able to see/report the actual error message
is much more helpful then just "something flashes on the screen real quick"
The current behavior isn't very friendly.
If mingetty is not adjusted, then PAM and login should be patched to not print
error messages to STDERR. Right now it teases you with information that you
can't quite read. Even a 2-3 second delay to read the error messages would be
Changing version to '9' as part of upcoming Fedora 9 GA.
More information and reason for this action is here:
Just to keep alive
Some feedback about this bug.
Fedora Bugzappers volunteer triage team
This message is a reminder that Fedora 9 is nearing its end of life.
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