Locked out of Web UI (maximum password limit reached)

Alex Vinyar -


I need to know how to unlock a user reached maximum password limit. 

UI error is: "password limit has been reached for a chef server user "
You already tried "chef-server-ctl password USER" to reset, and command executed.
But unable to log in since the user is already locked.

You do not receive password reset email because email on the chef server is either not setup, or doesn't work



If you don't have mail setup, then the email goes into the queue for postfix.

Run the following command to get the email containing the account reset link:

find /var/spool/ -type f -mtime -1 | xargs ls -lhtr

and then look at the file in question like so using cat or vi:

vi /var/spool/postfix/deferred/6/6401C2040F7

If you look in the spool as above you will the password resets previously attempted and can then use the link in there via copy and paste.


example of the email

CO 847 212 1 0 847T1456339779 245585Acreate_time=1456339779Arewrite_context=localFSnotifications@getchef.comOzzondlo@chef.ioRzzondlo@chef.ioMNMReceived: by add-ons-no-fqdn-centos-66.localdomain (Postfix, from userid 497)N6 id 6401C2040F7; Wed, 24 Feb 2016 18:49:39 +0000 (UTC)N%Date: Wed, 24 Feb 2016 18:49:38 +0000N4From: Chef Notifications <notifications@getchef.com>NTo: supportuser@chef.ioNIMessage-ID: <56cdfb42eabfb_97fedb9e4925b4@add-ons-no-fqdn-centos-66.mail>N!Subject: Reset Your Chef PasswordNMime-Version: 1.0NContent-Type: text/plain;N charset=UTF-8NContent-Transfer-Encoding: 7bitNN

Hello support_user,NNASomeone has requested a password reset for your Chef user accountN9'support_user'. If you did not initiate this request, please ignoreNJthis email. If you The Chef TeamXEpassword, follow this link to reset yourN password:NN�https://add-ons-no-fqdn-centos-66/password-reset?expires=1456426177&signature=4199d6fd44c14a0393id9a939d9178acaa8ddb4&username=support_userNNThanks,NN


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