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I was thinking about simply unplugging the drive, plug it into a different machine I have, and then edit the file from there. Is there a different/better/easier way of doing this?
Failing that, you're suggestion (mount drive somewhere where you have root) and then editing the password file to remove the hash is the best/only way to go.
to boot the machine into single-user mode. That might give you root access (without a password) and would allow you to edit
. If you don't know the root password, you can also reset it with
. Otherwise, can you boot the machine with a live CD?
If you want to remove the hash for the root password, I think you'll have to edit
If another user has uid 0, then they have root access.
It might also be helpful to mention what OS you are running. For example, on a FreeBSD install with security turned on, you wouldn't be able to boot into single-user without knowing the password.