[mythtv-users] mythtv user login password

Stephen Worthington stephen_agent at jsw.gen.nz
Thu Jun 11 03:46:32 UTC 2020

On Wed, 10 Jun 2020 20:52:12 -0500, you wrote:

>Hello All,
>I have recently returned to mythtv after a few years! I've successfully
>setup a new machine as a FE/BE and installed mythweb.
>Everything works, but I am thinking that moving some of my video library to
>the machine would be easier via scp and figured I'd use the mythtv userid
>so I don't have to mess with ownership and permissions for the files, but I
>don't know what the mythtv user password is, and figure I could change it,
>but then I wondered if I'd be breaking things if I did that.
>I can't think of anything that uses the mythtv password... but not sure
>about that which I don't know, and / or can't remember.... Is the mythtv
>user password used for anything??   Would it be safe for me to change it??
> Anyway to find out what it is? How was it set in the first place?
>If it won't blow my installation up or if it only cause something that'd be
>easy to fix, I'd like to go ahead and reset it to something that I can
>remember. It would make moving things about a bit easier.
>Thanks for your advice!
>-- George

Presuming you are talking about an Ubuntu based system, then as
installed the mythtv user does not have a password.  It is a fairly
common way of installing users that are used to run software and are
not real logins.  Software that runs as mythtv (eg mythbackend) gets
started by systemd which runs as root and can do anything.  So systemd
changes the user to be mythtv when it runs mythbackend, and it does
not need a password to do that.

The normal way for you to login as the mythtv user is to do the same
trick - use the authority of root to do anything:

sudo su -l mythtv

But you can just add a password if you want to:

sudo passwd mythtv

The mythtv user does normally have a database password for access to
the mythconverg database.  But that is completely separate from a user

By default, the root user in Ubuntu is not given a password either,
and you can add one if you want to:

sudo passwd

There are some security implications of doing that, but I always do it
shortly after I install a new system.  I also install SSH and allow
root logins, but I only allow connections to the SSH port from within
the secure part of my home network, by way of the firewall rules in my

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