SUMMARY: Solaris components that set PATH

From: Geoff Lane (
Date: Thu May 18 2000 - 07:24:18 CDT

I mentioned the following locations where PATH may be set...

        /etc/profile (for sh, ksh, bash shells)
              /etc/.login (for csh, tcsh shells)
              /etc/dt/config/Xconfig (for CDE)

Others mentioned...
        /etc/default/login (used by login program)
        /etc/default/su (used by su program)

Also mentioned were various $HOME/.files but they don't alter the global

In the end however, the problem that started all this was not due to Solaris
but SSH (I should have suspected this - it's unlikely that SUN would alter
global PATH defaults as part of a patch - I hope.)

It turns out that under some conditions ssh v. 1.2.27 silently _adds_ the
ssh install directory to the PATH it sets during login! If you install ssh into
/usr/local/bin, sshd will build (at run time!) a
        PATH=<required default path>:/usr/local/bin
and supply it as the initial user PATH...

Someone obviously thought it was a good idea to force the PATH to include
the location where the various ssh programs may be found. However, it's an
extremely BAD idea to do it silently (not to mention the three different
places within sshd.c where there is code to do this at run time.) We can't
be that unusual a site where the ordering of the users default PATH is
important - having /usr/local/bin placed ahead of other bin directories can,
and has, resulted in bizzare user support calls. In addition the PATH
generated by sshd did not terminate in a ":" as the Solaris default appears
to do with the result that "/usr/local/bin/usr/openwin/bin" appeared in the
final user PATH and users complaining that they could not access X programs!

Thanks for all the replies (no vacation reports this time - everybodies
working hard this week :-))

Adam Barclay, Esther Muller, Kevin Colagio, James R Grinter, Karl Vogel,
Michael Stapleton and Fabrice Guerini.

/\ Geoff. Lane. /\ Manchester Computing /\ Manchester /\ M13 9PL /\ England /\

Damn it Jim, I'm a doctor not a doctor! Hey, wait a minute

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