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I need to add a new user (and add them to an existing group) for basic authentication on many different servers. What's the fastest way to do this?

The slow, dull way would be to ssh in to a server, run the htpasswd command, manually edit the groups file to add them and then copy those files to the several dozen other servers I would need to add them to (hmmm... but there may be different users on certain servers so I will likely have to do the entire process from scratch on each one). There's got to be a better way (plus I don't want to do this each time I have to add someone). How would you do this?

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It's time to look into LDAP for authentication, e.g. 389-DS or Active Directory. –  Michael Hampton Feb 1 '13 at 6:21

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

The answer is the same for this as it is for innumerable other use cases like this: use a config management system like puppet or chef to manage and distribute these files.

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I've periodically come across articles about these for ages. I guess it's time to try one out. –  Lothar_Grimpsenbacher Feb 1 '13 at 6:32
    
It most certainly is. :) –  EEAA Feb 1 '13 at 6:34

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