Resetting a lost root password on RHEL 4

Step 1: At the console, press Ctrl-Alt-Del. This should initiate a semi-graceful reboot.

Step 2: After the OS is down, the system will start to reboot.

Step 3: Once BIOS stuff is done, the GRUB screen will appear for a couple of seconds. Press any key at this screen to interrupt the boot process.

Step 4: If you interrupt the process in time, you will be presented with a menu. Highlight the top option and press E.

Step 5: Highlight the line that starts with “kernel” and press E to edit that line.

Step 6: Add the word “single” to the end of the line.

Step 7: Hit Enter. That will take you back to the previous screen. Hit B to boot. This will start the boot process into single user mode.

Step 8: Once the OS is up in single user mode, you will be presented with a prompt.

Step 9: At this prompt, use the “passwd” command to change the root password. After this is done, use the “reboot” command to reboot.

Step 10: The system should boot back into normal mode with the new root password.


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