Ansible Pilot

Remove user account - Ansible module user

How to remove an example user removing home directory and spool files.

September 1, 2021
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How to remove a user account with Ansible?

I’m going to show you a live demo with some simple Ansible code. I’m Luca Berton and welcome to today’s episode of Ansible Pilot.

Ansible remove user account

Today we’re talking about the Ansible module user. The full name is ansible.builtin.user, which means that is part of the collection of modules “builtin” with ansible and shipped with it. It’s a module pretty stable and out for years, it manages user accounts. It supports a huge variety of Linux distributions, SunOS and macOS, and FreeBSD. This module uses Linux distributions userdel to delete, on FreeBSD, this module uses pw userdel, on macOS, this module uses dscl. For Windows, use the ansible.windows.win_user module instead.

Main Parameters

This module has many parameters to perform any task. The only required is “name”, which is the username. “state” allows us to create or delete a user, in the use case we need to specify “absent” to delete a user. If we would like to try to remove the directories associated with the user, we need to set the parameter “remove”. The behavior is the same as userdel --remove. Files in the user’s home directory will be removed along with the home directory itself and the user’s mail spool. Files in other parts of the file system will have to be searched for and deleted manually.

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Let’s jump into a real-life Ansible Playbook to delete a user.

---
- name: user module demo
  hosts: all
  become: true
  tasks:
    - name: user example not present
      ansible.builtin.user:
        name: example
        state: "absent"
        remove: true

code with ❤️ in GitHub

Recap

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