10 most used chage command examples in Linux

Introduction to chage command in Linux

chage command is used to view and modify the user's account and password expiry information. It modifies the date of password expiry, last password change, and account expiry. System administrators can use this command to manage the aging information of accounts.

In this article, you will find the different examples of chage command to change the aging information of a user.

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Different examples to use chage command

Only the root user or sudo users can execute the chage command. It takes the user name as an argument.

The syntax for chage command is:

$ sudo chage [options] user

 

1. Show the account aging information with chage command

-l option shows the aging information of an account.

$ sudo chage -l user

Sample Output:

chage command to show account aging information

 

2. chage command to modify the last password change date

You can use -d or --lastday option to modify the last password change date. It takes a number of days(NUM_DAYS) or a complete date as an argument. If you specify the number of days, it will assign the date after NUM_DAYS since January 1st, 1970. You should provide the date in YYYY-MM-DD format.

$ sudo chage -d YYYY-MM-DD user

OR

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$ sudo chage --lastday YYYY-MM-DD user

Sample Output:

chage command to modify last password change date

 

3. chage command to set the account expiry date

You can set or edit the account expiry date by using -E or --expiredate option.

$ sudo chage -E YYYY-MM-DD user

OR

$ sudo chage --expiredate YYYY-MM-DD user

Sample Output:

chage command to set account expiry date

 

4. Set the minimum number of days between password change

You can use -m or --mindays option to change the minimum number of days between password change. The user cannot change his/her password before the minimum days between password change. The number 0 indicates that the user can change the password anytime.

$ sudo chage -m NUM_DAYS user

OR

$ sudo chage --mindays NUM_DAYS user

Sample Output:

chage command to edit minimim number of days between password change

 

5. Set the maximum number of days between password change

The maximum number of days after which the password will expire. You can change it using -M or --maxdays option. When the maximum days and last password change date is less than the current date, the user will need to change the password to use the account. The value -1 in this field removes the password validity.

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$ sudo chage -M NUM_DAYS user

OR

$ sudo chage --maxdays NUM_DAYS user

Sample Output:

chage command to change the maximum number of days between password change

As you can see, it also updated the password expiry date , after which the password will expire.

 

6. chage command to set the number of days of inactivity

-I or --inactive option sets the number of days of inactivity after the password has expired. The account will be locked after this time period of inactivity.

$ sudo chage -I NUM_DAYS user

OR

$ sudo chage --inactive NUM_DAYS user

Sample Output:

chage command to set the password inactivity

The value -1 in NUM_DAYS removes the account inactivity.

 

7. Set the number of days of warning before password expires

The user will be warned before his/her password expiry date. To set or modify the number of days of warning before a password expires, you can use -W or --warndays option.

$ sudo chage -W NUM_DAYS user

OR

$ sudo chage --warndays NUM_DAYS user

Sample Output:

chage command to set the number of days of warning before password expires

 

8. Using chage command without any options (interactive)

You can use chage command without any options. It asks the users to enter the value for all the fields. You can either enter a new value to change the field or leave a blank to keep the current value. The current values are displayed between [ ] brackets.

$ sudo chage user

Sample Output:

using chage command without any option

 

9. chage command to set password expires to never

To change the value in password expires, you have to modify the value in maximum number of days between password change. If you put the value -1 in it, it will set the password expires to never.

$ sudo chage -M -1 user

Sample Output:

chage command to set password expires to never

 

10. Remove expiry date from user account with chage command

You can change the value in Account expires using -E or --expiredate option. If you provide the value -1, it will remove the account expiry date.

$ sudo chage -E -1 user

Sample Output:

chage command to set account expires never

 

Conclusion

These are the most important chage command examples in Linux. You can use this command to view and manage the user's account and password expiry date.

 

What's Next

15 most used usermod command examples in Linux

 

Further Reading

man page for chage command

 

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