[CentOS] Gnome Desktop Screensaver Security Lock Override?

Jay Leafey jay.leafey at mindless.com
Mon Sep 18 16:51:49 UTC 2006


James B. Byrne wrote:
> We deployed our first CentOS-4 based workstation this past spring to see
> if we can conveniently replace all, or at least most, of our MS-Win based
> user systems with Linux boxes instead.  Generally this trial unit has
> proved a success but there is one lingering problem that I cannot seem to
> find a straight-forward answer to: Is there an administrator override to a
> user's password protected screensaver terminal lock?  So far the solution
> seems to have been brute force system resets and I am not happy with this
> caviler approach to what should be a simple, and safe, administrative
> procedure.
> 
> So, is there an equivalent function to MS-Win's administrator login to
> force entry into a locked terminal and make it available for others?

Here is a brute-force approach: you can force the X server to shutdown with control-alt-backspace.  The screensaver does not appear 
to trap that key sequence for special handling, so it gets passed through to X, which shuts down.  The init process should respawn 
the X server when it detects it's death.

Be warned, I don't think this cleanly shuts any running applications down.  It forces the X server to die and any child processes 
will most likely die unpleasantly.  I've used it before but only as a last resort.  On the other hand, I've done it accidentally 
when trying to change screen resolutions with control-alt-+, too.  I haven't had any horrible problems with this, but I am a bit 
leery of using it unless the need is extreme.

Hope that helps!
-- 
Jay Leafey - Memphis, TN
jay.leafey at mindless.com
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