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I am trying to create a NIS group with a member list that exceeds 1024 characters. Now I can't do that because the database that NIS uses restricts the value part of the key/value pair to 1024 characters.

The internet suggests that I should be able to break up the list and have sub-lists as members of the main list, but it doesn't seem to work for me.

Theoretically, I should be able to go:

sublist1:x:998:a,b,c, [...]
sublist2:x:997:m,n,o, [...]

Then make and deal with nscd caches... if I then check a user account involved:

$ id

Since I want to use the group group, I should be able to go:

$ newgrp group

...but it doesn't work.

What am I doing wrong here?

share|improve this question
up vote 4 down vote accepted

I think you need to keep the GID that same for all the (sub)groups and have the real group as the first to be found e.g.

somegroup1:x:999:b,c,d, [...]
somegroup2:x:999:e,f,g, [...]
share|improve this answer
You can assure that the ordering of the entries in a static file. However, NIS/YP uses a database and the order of retrieval is not guaranteed. – mdpc Oct 4 '10 at 22:56
@mdpc -- that would only matter if you wanted to list the members of a group. I don't want to do that, all I want is for the group members to pick up the membership -- this is a stop-gap issue -- so this might work. – David Mackintosh Oct 5 '10 at 10:51
If the GIDs are the same, it works. – David Mackintosh Oct 5 '10 at 19:33
Also would there not be a problem with the newgrp command? In that the user would have to use the name of the group where his username appears and not the "general" name? – mdpc Oct 5 '10 at 20:30
Yes, you do have to use newgrp somegroupN to switch groups however the system will think you're in somegroup. It is a fugly hack but it works. – Iain Oct 5 '10 at 21:08

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