In this tutorial we will learn to delete user account in Linux.
In one of the previous tutorial we learned how to create a new user in linux using useradd command. Feel free to check that out.
Before we run the commands given in this tutorial we will switch to root user by running the
sudo su command.
In the following example I am switching from my account to root account. You will get a similar result on your terminal.
yusufshakeel@yusufshakeel-ubuntu:~$ sudo su [sudo] password for yusufshakeel: root@yusufshakeel-ubuntu:/home/yusufshakeel#
$ sign changes to
# and we also switch from
yusufshakeel user account to
Alright, lets learn how to delete user accounts.
passwd --lock- To lock user account
We start the deletion process by first locking the user account so that the user can't login again.
In the following example we are locking jane account.
# passwd --lock jane passwd: password expiry information changed.
killall- Kill all processes of the user
Now we will kill all the processes by the user using the
In the following example we are listing all the processes by user jane.
# pgrep -u jane 4076 4081 4101 4177 ... ...
To kill all the processes by user jane we will run the following command.
# killall -u jane
We have successfully stopped the user from logging in and we have also killed all the processes connected with the user.
Now, we will backup the data files of the user before deleting the account.
This is an optional step. If you think you are not going to need the data of the user then you can jump to the next step.
In the following example we are creating a backup copy of jane user account and saving it inside
# tar -zcvf /user-account-backup/jane-user-account-home-directory-backup.tar.gz /home/jane
userdel- Delete user
To delete the user we will use the
In the following example we are deleting user account of jane.
# userdel --remove jane
On Debian and its derivative system try using
# deluser --remove-home jane