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chage - change user password expiry information
chage [-m mindays] [-M maxdays] [-d lastday] [-I inactive]
[-E expiredate] [-W warndays] user
chage -l user
chage changes the number of days between password changes and the date of the last pass-
word change. This information is used by the system to determine when a user must change
her password. The chage command is restricted to the root user, except for the -l option,
which may be used by an unprivileged user to determine when her password or account is due
With the -m option, the value of mindays is the minimum number of days between password
changes. A value of zero for this field indicates that the user may change her password
at any time.
With the -M option, the value of maxdays is the maximum number of days during which a
password is valid. When maxdays plus lastday is less than the current day, the user will
be required to change her password before being able to use her account. This occurance
can be planned for in advance by use of the -W option, which provides the user with
With the -d option, the value of lastday is the number of days since January 1st, 1970
when the password was last changed. The date may also be expressed in the format YYYY-MM-
DD (or the format more commonly used in your area).
The -E option is used to set a date on which the user's account will no longer be accessi-
ble. The expiredate option is the number of days since January 1, 1970 on which the
accounted is locked. The date may also be expressed in the format YYYY-MM-DD (or the for-
mat more commonly used in your area). A user whose account is locked must contact the
system administrator before being able to use the system again.
The -I option is used to set the number of days of inactivity after a password has expired
before the account is locked. The inactive option is the number of days of inactivity. A
value of 0 disables this feature. A user whose account is locked must contact the system
administrator before being able to use the system again.
The -W option is used to set the number of days of warning before a password change is
required. The warndays option is the number of days prior to the password expiring that a
user will be warned her password is about to expire.
If none of the options are selected, chage operates in an interactive fashion, prompting
the user with the current values for all of the fields. Enter the new value to change the
field, or leave the line blank to use the current value. The current value is displayed
between a pair of [ ] marks.
The chage program requires shadow password file to be available. Its functionality is not
available when passwords are stored in the passwd file.
/etc/passwd - user account information
/etc/shadow - shadow user account information
Julianne Frances Haugh <email@example.com>
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