Setting up a new user and environment from within a python script

ericbrunson at ericbrunson at
Thu Feb 7 22:30:52 CET 2008

On Feb 7, 11:15 am, Henry Hollenberg <h... at> wrote:
> Hello,
> I have written a script that uses environment variables set during
> a particular users login in ".bash_profile" and ".profile".
> I have changed to that users uid and gid in my python script using:
> import os
> os.setegid
> os.setgid
> os.seteuid
> os.setuid
> but I still am not picking up the needed environment.  When I run:
> os.environ I can see that I still have the environment of the user
> that owns the python script.
> I would like to maintain the original script owner but somehow pick up
> the
> correct environment for the targeted user.  Several options looked to
> create
> an environment in a sub-process which I don't think is the correct
> solution.
> I could of course cut and paste the values from ".bash_profile" &
> ".profile"
> but figured there is probably a better, cleaner way to do the same.
> Searched this forum with no luck and checked several python
> references.
> What is the best practice to achieve this goal?
> Thanks, Henry Hollenberg

Since you're running the python script as root (the only we seteuid
would work) you could call the script using "su" and rely on it to set
the user's environment:

su - otherusername /path/to/your/script

Other than that, the alternatives are to parse the user's dot files
and set the appropriate env variables from within your script, but
that approach is fraught with problems.

Hope that helps a little.


More information about the Python-list mailing list