Add Server Access for a Group

This IT Pro Challenge tests advanced learners' knowledge of creating and managing users and groups in an Ubuntu Linux environment. Cyber Defense Forensics Analysts, Law Enforcement/Counterintelligence Forensics Analysts, Network Operations Specialists, and System Administrators review critical skills connecting to a server via SSH, as a new user.

1 hour
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This hour-long virtual IT Pro Challenge will check your knowledge-creating and managing groups in Ubuntu Linux. You will learn how to build a group, make users, assign users to the new group, and then log in to the server via Secure Shell (SSH). After establishing an SSH connection, you will log in as the new users, view group memberships, and exit the Linux shell.

Advanced learners, who have rudimentary knowledge on how to initiate and execute Linux commands and research Linux documentation, have the experience to finish this lab successfully. Plan on setting a full hour to complete the lab as you cannot return to the exercises midway. The virtual lab set-up consists of two Ubuntu Linux environments, with automatic login to one of the machines.

System Administrators and IT professionals responsible for network security will enrich their Linux understanding to allow appropriate account access while safeguarding entry from others without privileges. SSH defines an encryption standard allowing login and file updates and uploads, remotely to only those granted access. Identifying gaps and strengthening user and group account management skills serves an IT professional to grow their career.

Understanding the Scenario:

You are a system administrator responsible for security. You need to share access to a server. First, you add three user accounts. Next, you create a new group, and then add the user accounts to the new group. Finally, you verify that the new users can access the server via SSH.

Add a New Group:

In this section, you create a new group in the Ubuntu shell. Ensure that the Ubuntu2 virtual machine has finished provisioning. It may take a few minutes. The lab starts with logging into the first Ubuntu computer with root access, meaning you can use all the commands and files on a Linux system. You can verify your group existence using the 'tail' command.

Add New User Accounts:

You add three new user accounts through the 'useradd' command in this exercise. Then you assign a password for each user using the 'passwd' function. You can use the 'cat' or concatenate command with '/etc/passwd' to view all the users created.

Add New Users to the Group:

This module has you assign your new users with the 'usermod' command. You can modify user accounts to change their primary group assignments or to add them to existing groups as supplementary groups. Executing the 'tail' command with '\etc\group' allows you to check group membership.

Verify that the new users can connect to Ubuntu2 via SSH:

Throughout this virtual lab exercise, you use the second computer, Ubuntu2, to connect to the servers as the new users through SSH. Also, you check group membership as the new users. Be sure to get root privileges to view group membership, as this requires administrative access. So log in as the user and password then enter 'su -root.' Use the same password for root access, too.


After completing all the steps in this lab, you enhance your ability to add Linux server access to a group of users. You will have gained confidence in your skills learning how to manage and secure server access through manipulating Linux users and groups. Lab completion includes:

  • Adding a new group.
  • Creating new user accounts.
  • Assigning a password for each user.
  • Assigning a supplementary group to each new user account.
  • Verifying that each new user can connect by SSH.