PWD_MKDB(8) System Manager's Manual PWD_MKDB(8)
pwd_mkdb - generate the password databases
pwd_mkdb [-c] [-p | -s] [-d directory] [-u username] file
pwd_mkdb creates a pair of Berkeley databases from file and installs them
into /etc/spwd.db and /etc/pwd.db. The file argument is renamed to
The options are as follows:
-c Check whether file is in the correct format. Do not change, add,
or remove any files.
Operate in a base directory other than the default of /etc. All
absolute paths (including file) will be made relative to
directory. Any directories specified as a part of file will be
stripped off. This option is used to create password databases
in directories other than /etc; for instance in a chroot(8) jail.
-p Also create a legacy password file and install it into
-s Only update the secure version of the database. This is most
commonly used in conjunction with the -u flag during a password
change. Because the insecure database doesn't contain the
password there is no reason to update it if the only change is in
the password field. Cannot be used in conjunction with the -p
Only update the record for the specified user. Utilities that
operate on a single user can use this option to avoid the
overhead of rebuilding the entire database. This option must
never be used if the line number of the user's record in
/etc/master.passwd has changed.
file The absolute path to a file in master.passwd(5) format.
The two databases differ in that the secure version contains the user's
encrypted password and the insecure version has an asterisk (`*').
The databases are used by the C library password routines (see
/etc/master.passwd current password file
/etc/passwd legacy password file
/etc/pwd.db insecure password database file
/etc/pwd.db.tmp temporary file
/etc/spwd.db secure password database file
/etc/spwd.db.tmp temporary file
The pwd_mkdb utility exits 0 on success, and >0 if an error occurs.
chpass(1), passwd(1), dbopen(3), getpwent(3), passwd(5), vipw(8)
The pwd_mkdb utility first appeared in 4.3BSD-Net/2.
Because of the necessity for atomic update of the password files,
pwd_mkdb uses rename(2) to install them. This, however, requires that
the file specified on the command line live on the same file system as
the /etc directory.
There are the obvious races with multiple people running pwd_mkdb on
different password files at the same time. The front-ends to pwd_mkdb,
chpass(1), passwd(1), and vipw(8) handle the locking necessary to avoid
OpenBSD 6.2 September 10, 2017 OpenBSD 6.2
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