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group(5)                         File Formats                         group(5)

       group - group file


       The  group  file is a local source of group information. The group file
       can be used in conjunction with other group sources, including the  NIS
       maps,  group.byname  and group.bygid, or group information stored on an
       LDAP server. Programs use the  getgrnam(3C)  routines  to  access  this
       information.  Shell  scripts  use  the getent(8) command to access this

       The group file is an ASCII text file that resides in  the  /etc  direc‐
       tory.  /etc/group  has general read permission on all systems so it can
       be used by routines that map  between  numerical  user  IDs  and  group

       The  group  file contains a one-line entry for each group recognized by
       the system, of the form:



       groupname    The name of the group. A string  consisting  of  lowercase
                    alphabetic  characters  and  numeric characters. The group
                    name should be restricted to the Portable Filename Charac‐
                    ters:  A-Z,  a-z,  0-9,  underscore  (_),  hyphen (-), and
                    period (.). Neither a colon (:) nor a NEWLINE can be  part
                    of a groupname. The string cannot exceed, MAXGLEN-1, which
                    is currently defined as thirty two characters.

       gid          The group's unique numerical ID (GID) within the system.

       user-list    A comma-separated list of users allowed in the group.

       The maximum value of the gid field is 2147483647. To maximize  interop‐
       erability  and  compatibility, administrators are recommended to assign
       groups using the range of GIDs below 60000 where possible.

       A password can be demanded by newgrp(1) if the group password field  is
       not  empty.  Group  passwords  are  antiquated  and not often used, and
       should not be considered secure as their  hashes  are  visible  to  all
       users  in the /etc/group file. To create a password for a group use the
       pwhash(1) command, then cut and paste the output into /etc/group.

       During user identification and authentication, the supplementary  group
       access  list is initialized sequentially from information in this file.
       If a user is  in  more  groups  than  the  system  is  configured  for,
       {NGROUPS_MAX},  a  warning is given and subsequent group specifications
       are ignored.

       Malformed entries cause routines that read this file to halt, in  which
       case  group assignments specified further along are never made. To pre‐
       vent this from happening, use grpck(8) to check the /etc/group database
       from time to time.

       If the number of characters in an entry exceeds 2047, group maintenance
       commands, such as groupdel(8) and groupmod(8), fail.

       To update this file, use the groupadd(8), groupmod(8),  or  groupdel(8)
       commands.  Entries for groups may also be managed by group actions in a
       pkg(7) package.

       Directly editing the group file is not recommended. Appropriate precau‐
       tions  must  be  taken to lock the /etc/group file against simultaneous
       changes if it is to be edited with a text editor, such as by using  the
       pfedit(8) command.

       Example 1 An Example group File

       The following is an example of a group file:


       and the sample group entry from nsswitch.conf:

         group: files ldap

       With  these  entries,  the  group  stooges  has members larry, moe, and
       curly, and all groups listed on the LDAP server are effectively  incor‐
       porated after the entry for stooges.

       groups(1),   newgrp(1),   getgroups(2),  getgrnam(3C),  initgroups(3C),
       unistd.h(3HEAD), grpck(8), nsswitch.conf(5), groupadd(8),  groupdel(8),

       Entries  in  the  group  file  that begin with a '+' (plus sign) or '-'
       (minus sign) are ignored.

       An administrator must have authorization to add  a
       new  group.  An administrator can add a user to any group or modify any
       group  for  which  it  has  a  matching  authorization  of   the   form   An   administrator   must  have  both and either or  an  authoriza‐
       tion of the form to delete a group.

Oracle Solaris 11.4               11 May 2021                         group(5)
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