[CentOS] GUI/X11 login and shells other than bash?

Fri Dec 15 20:34:15 UTC 2017
Stephen John Smoogen <smooge at gmail.com>

On 15 December 2017 at 13:24, Valeri Galtsev <galtsev at kicp.uchicago.edu> wrote:
> Dear Experts,
> After one of updates that was released some time ago (a Month ago or maybe
> even earlier) I have noticed the following. On the machines with default
> runlevel 5 (sorry about old terminology, the new one is still confusing
> for me ;-) GUI/X11 login (display manager) lists only users whose default
> shell is bash. Or, at least users whose default shell is tcsh are not
> listed at all, and if they attempt to log in just by giving their UNIX
> username, their X11 session "crashes", meaning that after attempting to
> start, it just trows one back to GUI/X11 login screen.
> I really do not want to start this shell vs that shell flame war
> (especially that I myself prefer not tcsh but sh and/or bash for
> scripting...). But I respect my user's freedom of choosing default shell,
> so this is really big issue IMHO.
> I just wonder: does RedHat (CentOS's upstream vendor) dislike and is
> willing to eradicate all shells except for bash, or what I see is just my
> own pilot's error?

Just for future advise.. for someone who says they don't want to start
a flamewar.. you worded that pretty much like you wanted to start a
flame war.

This was simple to test.

1. I installed RHEL-7 in a virtual machine.
2. I created an account with its shell /bin/tcsh [useradd ssmoogen -s
/bin/tcsh ]
3. I went to the login screen. There was an ssmoogen there
4. I logged in as ssmoogen. I got a GNOME desktop
5. I opened a terminal and my shell was tcsh.

That took me 10 minutes. Due to this I am going to say that there is
something wrong with other parts of the start up environment from what
the shell is listed as in /etc/passwd, if the user has specific
startup scripts .xsession items or some similar problem based on
'shell cruft'. People who work on many different systems have to
regularly add exceptions and special cases or unadd them when they
find stuff breaks. I would also check to see if there is a post
configuration setup which changed /etc/shells on the system. Another
common problem is that the shell or startsups are looking for
/usr/local/bin/tcsh which doesn't exist.

Red Hat has a lot of different developers using pretty much every
shell that is shipped in RHEL and some which aren't even in Fedora.
The developers also use all kinds of different desktops and software..
while this doesn't mean bugs won't happen.. it does mean that if 'Red
Hat' was out to eradicate other shells, there would be posts on every
hacker site from Red Hat employees who wouldn't put up with it.

> Thanks in advance for all your answers.
> Valeri
> ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
> Valeri Galtsev
> Sr System Administrator
> Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics
> Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics
> University of Chicago
> Phone: 773-702-4247
> ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
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Stephen J Smoogen.