Fixing “passwd: Authentication token manipulation error” when changing passwords

I attempted to update my password on Ubuntu today and encountered a strange error. I thought I’d disseminate my solution in hopes that it saves other time. A few suggest playing with pwconvert, /etc/shadow and /etc/passwd, but my solution was much simpler.

Basically, if you run passwd and receive the error,”passwd: Authentication token manipulation error”, the culprit is likely Likewise Open. Unfortunately, even having this installed — but not configured — will prevent you from using passwd to update a local users’s password. Fortunately, the fix is very easy if you don’t actually use Likewise Open – just remove it from your system with this command:

sudo apt-get remove likewise-open

Confirm the prompts and after apt-get is done, you should be able to use passwd like normal. Thanks to Bug 302026 for guiding me to the solution. The bad news is that if you need to change the password of a local account and need Likewise Open installed, you might be out of luck.

21 thoughts on “Fixing “passwd: Authentication token manipulation error” when changing passwords

  1. well, my issue was similarly resolved, but here’s the differance.

    There was no “remount R/W” option in my recovery menu.
    If you go to FSCK, it will give you the option to mount as R/W, then it should return you to the recovery window, and if you look at the top it should now say read/write instead of read only
    then drop to root prompt, and passwd worked fine

  2. Sir i install Ubuntu on my laptop but i forget my password . when i try to rest them this error is occur “Authentication manipulation token error” . a lot of try i did but not success. kindly help me.

  3. ”passwd: Authentication token manipulation error” – system – hubuntu 12.04
    I tried this method:
    andi says:
    February 20, 2012 at 3:33 am

    When you are in recovery mode:
    select option to remount read/write – press enter
    when remounted try “drop to root shell prompt” again and change password
    it did work actually – hope itll work for you too

    It reaally works! TNX!!!))))))))))

  4. andi says:
    February 20, 2012 at 3:33 am

    When you are in recovery mode:
    select option to remount read/write – press enter
    when remounted try “drop to root shell prompt” again and change password
    it did work actually – hope itll work for you too

    THANKS it worked

  5. same problem as TJ, after remount it seems that nothing happens and i can’t get out except turning off the computer..

  6. when i try to remount it drops down to some shell below which im not able to get out of … how do i go to drop down to root after i remount?

  7. andi says:
    February 20, 2012 at 3:33 am

    When you are in recovery mode:
    select option to remount read/write – press enter
    when remounted try “drop to root shell prompt” again and change password
    it did work actually – hope itll work for you too

    Thanks man, this worked for me when nothing else did.

  8. When you are in recovery mode:
    select option to remount read/write – press enter
    when remounted try “drop to root shell prompt” again and change password
    it did work actually – hope itll work for you too

  9. Hi All,
    I have similar problem as Dwarakesh, I set the automatic login on, and after that my password is not recognized for updates and software installation. I have no problem with keyring. Trying to set the new password in recovery mode did not help. Using Ubuntu 11.10.

  10. yeah even I’m getting the same error on my sony e series laptop!!!!
    I am currently running ubuntu 11.10!!!
    thanks!

  11. my only problem is: i forgot my superuser password, so i can not remove Likewise Open. I followed some online advice and reboot my machine, then the [recovery] option, and then> “Drop to root shell prompt”.

    root@maryanche:~# passwd maryan
    enter new UNIX password:
    retype new UNIX password:
    passwd: authentication token manipulation error
    passwd: “password not updated” or something like that…
    what do i do…?
    thanks in advance…

  12. I attempted to update my password on Ubuntu today and encountered a strange error. I thought I’d disseminate my solution in hopes that it saves other time. A few suggest playing with pwconvert, /etc/shadow and /etc/passwd, but my solution was much simpler.

    Basically, if you run passwd and receive the error,”passwd: Authentication token manipulation error”, and passwd: password unchanged . error may be in likewise open and libnss-ldap. Unfortunately, even having this installed — but not configured — will prevent you from using passwd to update a local users’s password. Fortunately, the fix is very easy if you don’t actually use Likewise Open – just remove it from your system with this command:

    sudo apt-get remove likewise-open

    sudo apt-get remove libnss-ldap

    Confirm the prompts and after apt-get is done, you should be able to use passwd like normal. Thanks to Bug 302026 for guiding me to the solution. and refer http://www.ideaexcursion.com/2009/09/11/fixing-authentication-token-manipulation-error-when-changing-passwords-with-passwd/ this u get an solution.

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