Primary group creation
Each user must have a primary group, which can be specified with the
group attribute of the POSIXUser tag. (If the group
attribute is not specified, then a group with the same name as the
user will be used.) If that group does not exist, the POSIXUsers tool
will create it automatically. It does this by adding a POSIXGroup
entry on the fly; this has a few repercussions:
- When run in interactive mode (-I), Bcfg2 will prompt for
installation of the group separately from the user.
- The POSIXGroup entry is added to the same bundle as the
POSIXUser entry, so if the group is created, the bundle is
considered to have been modified and consequently Actions will be
run and Services will be restarted. This should never be a concern,
since the group can only be created, not modified (it has no
attributes other than its name), and if the group is being created
then the user will certainly be created or modified as well.
- The group is created with no specified GID number. If you need to
specify a particular GID number, you must explicitly define a
POSIXGroup entry for the group.
Managed UID/GID Ranges
In many cases, there will be users on a system that you do not want to
manage with Bcfg2, nor do you want them to be flagged as extra
entries. For example, users from an LDAP directory. In this case,
you may want to manage the local users on a machine with Bcfg2, while
leaving the LDAP users to be managed by the LDAP directory. To do
this, you can configure the UID and GID ranges that are to be managed
by Bcfg2 by setting the following options in the [POSIXUsers]
section of bcfg2.conf on the client:
Each option takes a comma-delimited list of numeric ranges, inclusive
at both bounds, one of which may be open-ended on the upper bound,
This would tell Bcfg2 to manage all users whose uid numbers were not
greater than or equal to 1000, and all groups whose gid numbers were 0
<= gid <= 500 or 700 <= gid <= 999.
If a whitelist is provided, it will be used; otherwise, the blacklist
will be used. (I.e., if you provide both, the blacklist will be
If a user or group is added to the specification with a uid or gid in
an unmanaged range, it will produce an error.
If you specify POSIXUser or POSIXGroup tags without an explicit
uid or gid, this will not prevent the users/groups from being
created with a uid/gid in an unmanaged range. If you want that to
happen, you will need to configure your useradd/groupadd
defaults appropriately. Note also, however, that this will not
cause Bcfg2 errors; it is only an error if a POSIXUser or
POSIXGroup has an explicit uid/gid in an unmanaged range.
Creating a baseline configuration
The majority of users on many systems are created by the packages that
are installed, but currently Bcfg2 cannot query the package database
to determine these users. (In some cases, this is a limitation of the
packaging system.) The often-tedious task of creating a baseline that
defines all users and groups can be simplified by use of the
tools/posixusers_baseline.py script, which outputs a bundle
containing all users and groups on the machine it’s run on.