Fixing /etc/sudoers file

high sierrasudo

I'm a systems admin for a company and was thrown into a horribly configured server. In the midst of my refactoring I was adding users to my /etc/sudoers file. I seem to have accidentally removed my server admin account from the sudoers file access.

I know what I did wrong (i accidentally commented out the %admin line) question being, how can I reinstate my server admin access in the file without having to restart anything.

Here's how it looks right now:

## User privilege specification
root ALL=(ALL) ALL
#%admin  ALL=(ALL) ALL
%superuser ALL=(ALL) ALL
"user1" ALL=(ALL) ALL
"user2" ALL=(ALL) ALL

Also note that my users do not have permission for sudo for some reason:

Realtor-Station-3-27:~ user1$ sudo -i

WARNING: Improper use of the sudo command could lead to data loss
or the deletion of important system files. Please double-check your
typing when using sudo. Type "man sudo" for more information.

To proceed, enter your password, or type Ctrl-C to abort.

user1 is not in the sudoers file.  This incident will be reported.
Realtor-Station-3-27:~ user1$ 

Best Answer

  • If you have access to finder and a system administrator account, you can fix this without a reboot by leveraging these.

    Open up your finder and go to /etc. In here, you can view the details of the sudoers file, including permissions - screenshot below.

    screenshot showing where to change permissions on the sudoers file in Finder

    Change the permissions for "everyone" here to Read & Write.

    At this time, you can edit yourself back into the file with any text editor. You will have to return permissions for "everyone" back to No Access before sudo will allow you to perform a sudo.

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