How to create a user with a non-standard home directory


  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux

  • openssh


  • How to create an SSH user with a non-standard home directory.


  1. Create the home directory for the user.

# mkdir -p /path/to/directory/user

For example:

# mkdir -p /storage/media/myuser
  1. Apply the correct SELinux label.

# chcon -Rv --type=user_home_dir_t /path/to/directory/user

For example:

# chcon -Rv --type=user_home_dir_t /storage/media/myuser
  1. Create the user and specify the home directory.

# useradd -d /path/to/directory/username -M username
# passwd username

For example:

# useradd -d /storage/media/myuser -M myuser
# passwd myuser
  1. Change the file permission and ownership of the home directory.

# chown -R user:user /path/to/directory/user
# chmod 700 /path/to/directory/user

For example:

# chown -R myuser:myuser /storage/media/myuser
# chmod 700 /storage/media/myuser
  1. Use the ssh-copy-id command to copy the ssh key from the client to the server.

$ ssh-copy-id user@ip_address

For example:

$ ssh-copy-id myuser@
  1. Apply the correct SELinux security context to the authorized_keys file.

# chcon -R -v system_u:object_r:usr_t:s0 /path/to/directory/username/.ssh/authorized_keys

For example:

# chcon -R -v system_u:object_r:usr_t:s0 /storage/media/myuser/.ssh/authorized_keys

Verify you can log in successfully.

$ ssh myuser@

Last login: Fri Sep 29 16:19:37 2023 from
[myuser@example ~]$ 

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