Azimout's Linux weblog


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Lately, gnome-system-log keeps complaining that it cannot find the file /var/log/btmp. I confirmed the file’s not there. Googling it told me that’s where failed login attempts are logged.

  • Not sure which process should be writing to it. Is it /bin/login? man login gives me a list of the files it uses, and btmp is not one of them.
  • Found no configuration file for gnome-system-log to tell it to stop looking for that file.
  • lastbShows failed login attempts. This command requires the file /var/log/btmp to exist in order to work. Type “touch /var/log/btmp” to begin logging to this file.

In the end, sudo touch /var/log/btmp (obviously) made the issue go away.

Don’t forget to chmod o-r /var/log/btmp afterwards, so no one else can read the failed attempts.



Written by azimout

01/02/2010 at 10:38

Posted in Problems

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