Best of Tech Support

I cried because I lost my password, and then I met a man who lost his user name.

I received Linux from my computer class. I use Partition Magic, but I forgot the logon name I used during the class. How do I get back in?

—Santos Gonzales,

Assuming you boot with LILO, you can use some trickery to get in. When it boots, type the name of your boot image (you may press tab to get a list of images in case you forgot those) and append the string init=/bin/bash. For example, LILO: linux init=/bin/bash. Now edit the file /etc/shadow and change the line containing the word root. You want to remove all the characters between the first and second colons. Save the file. Then press Ctrl-Alt-Del to reboot. Log in as root (no password) and immediately set a password with the passwd command.

—Ben Ford,

Linux Home Router

I recently finished installing Red Hat 7.2, and I have a separate Windows 98 PC connected to a Cox@home cable modem. I want to move the connection to the Linux box and use it as a router, firewall and, if possible, a DHCP server. The reason for the DHCP is because I want to learn how to set it up, and make it work. If you could give me the first step, or the steps in order of their priority, I would greatly appreciate it.

—Mike Dickson,

First, set up your firewall. You need to set up both router protection rules and IP masquerading rules (for your Windows 98 boxes). You might want to use a GUI-based tool to start out, but you will grow out of it. Red Hat's GUI is called firewall-config. Second, set up the DHCP server. There is a DHCP mini-HOWTO at That's about it for a router. You can do other cool things, such as setting up your own mail server and web server, but this is a good first challenge. Overall, this project seems to be something you WANT to do, as a challenge. If this is not the case, I would recommend highly LRP out of the box or a Linksys box.

—Christopher Wingert,



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Adaptec 1460 to run a scanner?

Scott Heinzerling's picture

I have Ubuntu 6.06 and i need to have my scsi adaptec 1460 pcmcia card working to scan to a scsi 2 scanner. I don't see the scsi module in the kernel. How do i get it and install it? Thanks, scott