Mac OSX adduser script

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Typically, it is rather annoying to add a user to OSX through the command line as it requires the administrator to specify each piece of user info one by one, as shown in the Mac Commandline Tools page. As a result, we've worked up an OSX specific script to easily add users through the command line.

  • Simply download this file: adduser
  • Make any necessary execution and permissions changes.
  • It is preferred to save it in /usr/sbin with other administrator tools.

If you're curious to see how it works, here are the contents of the script:

#!/bin/bash
# =========================
# Add User OSX Command Line
# =========================

# An easy add user script for Max OSX.
# Although I wrote this for 10.7 Lion Server, these commands have been the same since 10.5 Leopard.
# It's pretty simple as it uses and strings together the (rustic and ancient) commands that OSX 
# already uses to add users.

# === Typically, this is all the info you need to enter ===

echo "Enter your desired user name: "
read USERNAME

echo "Enter a full name for this user: "
read FULLNAME

echo "Enter a password for this user: "
read -s PASSWORD

# ====

# A list of (secondary) groups the user should belong to
# This makes the difference between admin and non-admin users.

echo "Is this an administrative user? (y/n)"
read GROUP_ADD

if [ "$GROUP_ADD" = n ] ; then
    SECONDARY_GROUPS="staff"  # for a non-admin user
elif [ "$GROUP_ADD" = y ] ; then
    SECONDARY_GROUPS="admin _lpadmin _appserveradm _appserverusr" # for an admin user
else
    echo "You did not make a valid selection!"
fi

# ====

# Create a UID that is not currently in use
echo "Creating an unused UID for new user..."

if  $UID -ne 0 ; then echo "Please run $0 as root." && exit 1; fi

# Find out the next available user ID
MAXID=$(dscl . -list /Users UniqueID | awk '{print $2}' | sort -ug | tail -1)
USERID=$((MAXID+1))


# Create the user account by running dscl (normally you would have to do each of these commands one
# by one in an obnoxious and time consuming way.
echo "Creating necessary files..."

dscl . -create /Users/$USERNAME
dscl . -create /Users/$USERNAME UserShell /bin/bash
dscl . -create /Users/$USERNAME RealName "$FULLNAME"
dscl . -create /Users/$USERNAME UniqueID "$USERID"
dscl . -create /Users/$USERNAME PrimaryGroupID 20
dscl . -create /Users/$USERNAME NFSHomeDirectory /Users/$USERNAME
dscl . -passwd /Users/$USERNAME $PASSWORD


# Add user to any specified groups
echo "Adding user to specified groups..."

for GROUP in $SECONDARY_GROUPS ; do
    dseditgroup -o edit -t user -a $USERNAME $GROUP
done

# Create the home directory
echo "Creating home directory..."
createhomedir -c 2>&1 | grep -v "shell-init"

echo "Created user #$USERID: $USERNAME ($FULLNAME)"