ubuntu How to Reset Forgotten Root Password in Ubuntu

In this article, you will learn how to reset the forgotten root password on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS and Ubuntu 20.04 LTS.

Firstly, you need to either power on or reboot your Ubuntu system. You should get a grub menu as shown below. If you are running your system on VirtualBox, press the ‘SHIFT’ key on the keyboard to bring up the boot menu.

Ubuntu Grub Menu
Ubuntu Grub Menu

Next, press the 'e' key to edit the grub parameters. This should display a screen as shown below.

Grub Boot Parameters
Grub Boot Parameters

Scroll down until you get to the line that begins with 'linux /boot/vmlinuz' the entire line is highlighted below.

Find Grub Boot Parameter
Find Grub Boot Parameter

Narrow down to a section that reads "ro quiet splash $vt_handoff".

Locate Grub Boot Parameter
Locate Grub Boot Parameter

Replace "ro quiet splash $vt_handoff" with rw init=/bin/bash as shown. The aim is to set the root file system with read and write commands denoted by the rw prefix.

Enable Root Filesystem
Enable Root Filesystem

Thereafter, press ctrl + x or F10 to reboot your system. Your system will boot into a root shell screen as shown below. You can confirm that the root filesystem had read and write access rights by running the command.

# mount | grep -w /

The output in the screenshot below confirms read and write access rights denoted by rw.

Confirm Root Filesytem Permissions
Confirm Root Filesytem Permissions

To reset the root password execute the command.

# passwd 

Provide a new password and confirm it. Thereafter, you will get a ‘password updated successfully’ notification.

Reset Root Password in Ubuntu
Reset Root Password in Ubuntu

With the root password successfully changed, reboot into your Ubuntu system by running the command.

# exec /sbin/init

Thank you for coming this far. We hope that you can now comfortably reset the forgotten root password on your Ubuntu system from the grub menu.

0 (0)
Article Rating (No Votes)
Rate this article
There are no attachments for this article.
There are no comments for this article. Be the first to post a comment.
Full Name
Email Address
Security Code Security Code
Related Articles RSS Feed
stunnel How To Set Up an SSL Tunnel Using Stunnel on Ubuntu
Viewed 309 times since Sun, Dec 6, 2020
linux ssh Remotely Initiated Reverse SSH Tunnel
Viewed 868 times since Wed, Apr 22, 2020
Linux - How to perform I/O performance test with dd command
Viewed 4706 times since Fri, Jun 8, 2018
ZFS: Snapshots and clones on zfs filesystems
Viewed 1815 times since Sun, Jun 3, 2018
RHEL: Remove existing SAN LUNs
Viewed 12358 times since Sat, Jun 2, 2018
How log rotation works with logrotate
Viewed 2574 times since Fri, Nov 30, 2018
RHCS6: Mirror/unmirror a GFS2 volume
Viewed 3868 times since Sun, Jun 3, 2018
List of 10 Must Know Oracle Database Parameters for Database Administrator
Viewed 26834 times since Thu, Jun 21, 2018
How to use yum-cron to automatically update RHEL/CentOS Linux
Viewed 1081 times since Wed, Oct 17, 2018
SSH: Execute Remote Command or Script – Linux
Viewed 988 times since Mon, Feb 18, 2019