IRC:adduser-cli [2019-12-12]


A broken config or corrupted files of the user might disable one to login using the gui. To get back to a graphical environment (does allow easier fixing), you can create another user and giving it optionally sudo permissions from a text-console.

Switch from the graphical login to a console, by pressing CTRL+ALT+F1. If you are not using linux mint, you might need to switch to the 2nd console using CTRL+ALT+F2 instead.


In the following a user myadm is created, where you could use a different name. The user is created with administrative privileges = member of the group sudo.

Why administrator/sudo?

It's nice to have a 2nd full account possessing sudo-rights as backup, which can be used if the main-account (typically the only one able to run admin tasks) would fail some day.

A sudo-user can become root and access data of the original user with full access rights, which might get important to fix a broken main-user account.

The command adduser will ask you to enter a password for the new user. Do not try to use an empty password, as this will prevent login with many graphical login tools (and is a stupid idea anyways).

Do not confuse the adduser-command with the useradd-command, which is sadly often mentioned on web-resources.

Create the user

Get a root-shell first (just for less typing):

sudo -i

Create the user and enter a solid password, which you should write down NOW. Other information, being asked, is optional and can be skipped by pressing enter:

adduser myadm

Add the new user to the sudo-group:

usermod -a -G sudo myadm

Sync the filesystem and reboot (to be sure the changed config is read):


After reboot, login as the new user to fix broken settings, or whatever you need.

Knows issues:

"empty" desktop

If you face an empty desktop (depends on your installed version of linux mint) or there are parts of the desktop-environment missing: press CTRL+ALT+Backspace

This will reset the x-session and return you to the login-screen. After doing the login for a second time your desktop should show up and work ...


If you turned on the autologin feature, for lightdm (login-/desktop-manager) with a zero-timeout, you got no real chance to select your fresh created user on boot.

To bypass this - you have to edit the file /etc/lightdm/lightdm.conf and (easiest option) add a comment-character # in front of the line starting with "autologin-user="

To edit the file in text mode, one can use nano:

sudo nano etc/lightdm/lightdm.conf

Where the edited file will look similar to this afterwards:

# autologin-user=youroldusernamehere

After saving the file, do reboot again. You should now be able to select the new user at the login dialog.

Related information

IRC:nano.htma simple text-mode editor
IRC:fixconfig.htmTest and reset corrupted config-files of a user.
IRC:notowner.htmcheck for broken owner-ship of files/folders

© 1998-2023 by ORCUS® GmbH - (imprint) - we strictly do not track (period) - details: privacy - overview IRC: IRC support

note-1: not tracking does mean too - we are strictly NOT using direct external links within the content = we bother you having to copy&paste offered URLs