user information server
implements a simple protocol based on RFC
1288 that provides an interface to the Name and Finger programs at several
network sites. The program is supposed to return a friendly, human-oriented
status report on either the system at the moment or a particular person in
depth. There is no required format and the protocol consists mostly of
specifying a single “command line”.
is started by
, which listens for TCP
requests at port 79. Once connected it reads a single command line terminated
by a ⟨CRLF⟩ which is passed to
closes its connections as soon as the
output is finished.
If the line is null (i.e., just a ⟨CRLF⟩ is sent) then
“default” report that lists all people logged into the system at
If a user name is specified (e.g., eric⟨CRLF⟩) then the response
lists more extended information for only that particular user, whether logged
in or not. Allowable “names” in the command line include both
“login names” and “user names”. If a name is
ambiguous, all possible derivations are returned.
The following options may be passed to fingerd
server program arguments in /etc/inetd.conf
- Enable logging. The name of the host originating the query
and the actual request is reported via
syslog(3) at LOG_NOTICE
priority. A request of the form ‘/W’ or ‘/w’
will return long output. Empty requests will return all currently logged
in users. All other requests look for specific users. See RFC 1288 for
- Enables matching of user
names. This is disabled by default if the system is running YP.
- Prevent matching of user
names. User is usually a login name;
however, matching will also be done on the users' real names, unless the
-m option is supplied.
- Use an alternate program as the local information provider.
The default local program executed by fingerd
is finger(1). By specifying
a customized local server, this option allows a system manager to have
more control over what information is provided to remote sites.
finger(1) from displaying
the contents of the “.plan” and
- Prints user information in short mode, one line per user.
This overrides the “Whois
switch” that may be passed in from the remote client.
- Enable secure mode. Forwarding of queries to other remote
hosts is denied.
- Queries without a user name are rejected.
The Finger User Information Protocol,
RFC 1288, December
command appeared in