Section (5) nologin
nologin — prevent unprivileged users from logging into the system
If the file
exists and is readable, login(1) will allow access
only to root. Other users will be shown the contents of this
file and their logins will be refused. This provides a simple
way of temporarily disabling all unprivileged logins.
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Copyright (c) 1993 Michael Haardt (michaelmoria.de),
Fri Apr 2 11:32:09 MET DST 1993
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Modified Sun Jul 25 11:06:34 1993 by Rik Faith (faithcs.unc.edu)
Corrected Mon Oct 21 17:47:19 EDT 1996 by Eric S. Raymond (esrthyrsus.com)
Section (8) nologin
nologin — politely refuse a login
nologin displays a message that an account is not available and exits non-zero. It is intended as a replacement shell field to deny login access to an account.
If the file /etc/nologin.txt exists, nologin displays its contents to the user instead of the default message.
The exit code returned by nologin is always 1.
nologin is a per-account way to disable login (usually used for system accounts like http or ftp). nologin(8) uses /etc/nologin.txt as an optional source for a non-default message, the login access is always refused independently of the file.
pam_nologin(8) PAM module usually prevents all non-root users from logging into the system. pam_nologin(8) functionality is controlled by /var/run/nologin or the /etc/nologin file.
The nologin command is part of the util-linux package and is available from Linux Kernel Archive