This module provides access to the Unix user account and password database. It is available on all Unix versions.
Password database entries are reported as a tuple-like object, whose attributes correspond to the members of the
passwd structure (Attribute field below, see
|0|| ||Login name|
|1|| ||Optional encrypted password|
|2|| ||Numerical user ID|
|3|| ||Numerical group ID|
|4|| ||User name or comment field|
|5|| ||User home directory|
|6|| ||User command interpreter|
The uid and gid items are integers, all others are strings.
KeyError is raised if the entry asked for cannot be found.
In traditional Unix the field
pw_passwd usually contains a password encrypted with a DES derived algorithm (see module
crypt). However most modern unices use a so-called shadow password system. On those unices the pw_passwd field only contains an asterisk (
'*') or the letter
'x' where the encrypted password is stored in a file
/etc/shadow which is not world readable. Whether the pw_passwd field contains anything useful is system-dependent. If available, the
spwd module should be used where access to the encrypted password is required.
It defines the following items:
Return the password database entry for the given numeric user ID.
Return the password database entry for the given user name.
Return a list of all available password database entries, in arbitrary order.
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