sudo command provides a mechanism for granting administrator privileges — ordinarily only available to the root user — to normal users. This guide will show you how to create a new user with
sudo access on CentOS 8, without having to modify your server’s
/etc/sudoers file. If you want to configure
sudo for an existing CentOS user, skip to step 3.
Step 1 — Logging Into Your Server
SSH in to your server as the root user:
- ssh [email protected]_server_ip_address
Use your server’s IP address or hostname in place of
Step 2 — Adding a New User to the System
adduser command to add a new user to your system:
- adduser sammy
Be sure to replace
sammy with the username you’d like to create.
passwd command to update the new user’s password:
- passwd sammy
Remember to replace
sammy with the user that you just created. You will be prompted twice for a new password:
OutputChanging password for user sammy. New password: Retype new password: passwd: all authentication tokens updated successfully.
Step 3 — Adding the User to the wheel Group
usermod command to add the user to the wheel group:
- usermod -aG wheel sammy
Once again, be sure to replace
sammy with the username you’d like to give
sudo priveleges to. By default, on CentOS, all members of the wheel group have full
Step 4 — Testing
To test that the new
sudo permissions are working, first use the
su command to switch from the root user to the new user account:
- su - sammy
As the new user, verify that you can use
sudo by prepending
sudo to the command that you want to run with superuser privileges:
- sudo command_to_run
For example, you can list the contents of the
/root directory, which is normally only accessible to the root user:
- sudo ls -la /root
The first time you use
sudo in a session, you will be prompted for the password of that user’s account. Enter the password to proceed:
Output[sudo] password for sammy:
Note: This is not asking for the root password! Enter the password of the sudo-enabled user, not the root password.
If your user is in the proper group and you entered the password correctly, the command that you issued with
sudo will run with root privileges.
In this quickstart tutorial we created a new user account and added it to the wheel group to enable
sudo access. For more detailed information on setting up a CentOS 8 server, please read our Initial Server Setup with CentOS 8 tutorial.