How to Remove (Delete) a User on Ubuntu 16.04

User management includes removing users who no longer need access, removing their username and any associate root privileges are necessary for securing your server. Deleting a user’s access to your Linux server is a typical operation which can easily be performed using a few commands.  

Pre-flight Check

  • We are logged in as root on an Ubuntu 16.04 VPS powered by Liquid Web!

Step 1: Remove the User

Insert the username you want to delete by placing it after the userdel command. In our example, I’ll be deleting our user, Tom.

userdel tom

Simultaneous you can delete the user and the files owned by this user with the -r flag.  Be careful these files are not needed to run any application within your server.

userdel -r tom

If the above code produces the message below, don’t be alarmed, it is not an error, but rather /home/tom existed but /var/mail/tom did not.

userdel: tom mail spool (/var/mail/tom) not found

 

Step 2: Remove Root Privileges

By removing Tom’s username from our Linux system we are halfway complete, but we still need to remove their root privileges.

visudo

Navigate to the following section:

## Allow root to run any commands anywhere
root ALL=(ALL:ALL) ALL
tom ALL=(ALL:ALL) ALL

Or:

## User privilege specification
root ALL=(ALL:ALL) ALL
tom ALL=(ALL:ALL) ALL

With either result, remove access for your user by deleting the corresponding entry:

tom ALL=(ALL:ALL) ALL

Save and exit this file by typing :wq and press the enter key.

To add a user, see our frequently used article, How to Add a User and Grant Root Privileges on Ubuntu 16.04. Are you using a different Ubuntu version? We’ve got you covered, check out our Knowledge Base to find your version.

How to Remove (Delete) a User on Ubuntu 15.04

Users via Command Line 101: Basic User Interaction
I. How to Add a User and Grant Root Privileges on Ubuntu 15.04
II. How to Remove (Delete) a User on Ubuntu 15.04

Pre-Flight Check

  • These instructions are intended specifically for removing a user on Ubuntu 15.04.
  • I’ll be working from a Liquid Web Self Managed Ubuntu 15.04 server, and I’ll be logged in as root.

Continue reading “How to Remove (Delete) a User on Ubuntu 15.04”

How to Remove (Delete) a User on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS

Users via Command Line 101: Basic User Interaction
I. How to Add a User and Grant Root Privileges on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS
II. How to Remove (Delete) a User on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS

Pre-Flight Check

  • These instructions are intended specifically for removing a user on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS.
  • I’ll be working from a Liquid Web Core Managed Ubuntu 14.04 LTS server, and I’ll be logged in as root.

Continue reading “How to Remove (Delete) a User on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS”

How to Remove (Delete) a User on Ubuntu 12.04 LTS

Users via Command Line 101: Basic User Interaction
I. How to Add a User and Grant Root Privileges on Ubuntu 12.04 LTS
II. How to Remove (Delete) a User on Ubuntu 12.04 LTS
Pre-Flight Check
  • These instructions are intended specifically for removing a user on Ubuntu 12.04 LTS.
  • I’ll be working from a Liquid Web Core Managed Ubuntu 12.04 LTS server, and I’ll be logged in as root.

Continue reading “How to Remove (Delete) a User on Ubuntu 12.04 LTS”

How to Remove (Delete) a User on Fedora 21

Users via Command Line 101: Basic User Interaction
I. How to Add a User and Grant Root Privileges on Fedora 21
II. How to Remove (Delete) a User on Fedora 21
Pre-Flight Check
  • These instructions are intended specifically for removing a user on Fedora 21.
  • I’ll be working from a Liquid Web Self Managed Fedora 21 server, and I’ll be logged in as root.

Continue reading “How to Remove (Delete) a User on Fedora 21”

How to Remove (Delete) a User on Fedora 20

Users via Command Line 101: Basic User Interaction
I. How to Add a User and Grant Root Privileges on Fedora 20
II. How to Remove (Delete) a User on Fedora 20
Pre-Flight Check
  • These instructions are intended specifically for removing a user on Fedora 20.
  • I’ll be working from a Liquid Web Core Managed Fedora 20 server, and I’ll be logged in as root.

Continue reading “How to Remove (Delete) a User on Fedora 20”

How to Remove (Delete) a User on CentOS 7

Users via Command Line 101: Basic User Interaction
I. How to Add a User and Grant Root Privileges on CentOS 7
II. How to Remove (Delete) a User on CentOS 7
Pre-Flight Check
  • These instructions are intended specifically for removing a user on CentOS 7.
  • I’ll be working from a Liquid Web Core Managed CentOS 7 server, and I’ll be logged in as root.

Continue reading “How to Remove (Delete) a User on CentOS 7”