Managing Users and Groups 3.0

OpenNebula supports user accounts and groups. This guide shows how to manage both.

After the installation, the administrative user oneadmin and two default groups should be created. You can check it using the oneuser list and onegroup list commands.


A user in OpenNebula is defined by a username and password. You don't need to create a new Unix account in the front-end for each OpenNebula user, they are completely different concepts. OpenNebula users are authenticated using a session string included in every operation, which is checked by the OpenNebula core.

Each user has a unique ID, and belongs to a group.

There are two user types in the OpenNebula system:

  • The oneadmin account is created the first time OpenNebula is started using the ONE_AUTH data. oneadmin has enough privileges to perform any operation on any object.
  • Regular user accounts must be created by oneadmin and they can only manage their own objects (images, virtual machine templates and networks), and use public objects from other users in his group.

OpenNebula users should have the following environment variables set, you may want to place them in the .bashrc of the user's Unix account for commodity:

ONE_XMLRPC URL where the OpenNebula daemon is listening. By default, it should be http://localhost:2633/RPC2. See the PORT attribute in the Daemon configuration file for more information.
ONE_AUTH Needs to point to a file containing just a single line stating “username:password”. If ONE_AUTH is not defined, $HOME/.one/one_auth will be used instead. If no auth file is present, OpenNebula cannot work properly, as this is needed by the core, the CLI, and the cloud components as well.

For instance, a user named regularuser may have the following environment:

$ tail ~/.bashrc 



$ cat ~/.one/one_auth

:!: Please note that the example above is intended for a user interacting with OpenNebula from the front-end, but you can use it from any other computer. Just set the appropriate hostname and port in the ONE_XMLRPC variable.

Adding and Deleting Users

User accounts within the OpenNebula system are managed by oneadmin with the oneuser create and oneuser delete commands. Users can be easily added to the system like this:

$ oneuser create regularuser password
ID: 1

$ oneuser list
  ID GROUP    NAME                                                      PASSWORD
   0 oneadmin oneadmin                  5baa61e4c9b93f3f0682250b6cf8331b7ee68fd8
   1 users    regularuser               5baa61e4c9b93f3f0682250b6cf8331b7ee68fd8

$ oneuser show regularuser
USER 1 INFORMATION                                                              
ID             : 1                   
NAME           : regularuser         
GROUP          : 1                   
PASSWORD       : 5baa61e4c9b93f3f0682250b6cf8331b7ee68fd8
ENABLED        : Yes                 

The enabled flag can be ignored as it doesn't provide any functionality. It may be used in future releases to temporarily disable users instead of deleting them.

Manage your Own User

Regular users can see their account information, and change their password.

For instance, as regularuser you could do the following:

$ oneuser list
[UserPoolInfo] User [1] not authorized to perform action on user.

$ oneuser show
USER 1 INFORMATION                                                              
ID             : 1                   
NAME           : regularuser         
GROUP          : 1                   
PASSWORD       : 5baa61e4c9b93f3f0682250b6cf8331b7ee68fd8
ENABLED        : Yes                 

$ oneuser passwd 1 abcdpass

As you can see, any user can find out his ID using the oneuser show command without any arguments.


A group in OpenNebula makes possible to isolate users and resources. A user can see and use the public resources (Templates, Images, Virtual Networks) in his group; but resources from other groups are completely unreachable.

There are two system groups created by default. The onedmin group allows any user in it to perform any operation, allowing different users to act with the same privileges as the oneadmin user.

Adding and Deleting Groups

Your can use the onegroup command line tool to manage groups in OpenNebula. There are two groups created by default, oneadmin and users.

To create new groups:

$ onegroup list
  ID NAME           
   0 oneadmin       
   1 users          

$ onegroup create "new group"
ID: 100

The new group has ID 100 to differentiate the system groups to the user-defined ones.

When a new group is created, two ACL rules are also created to provide the default behaviour. You can learn more about ACL rules in this guide; but you don't need any further configuration to start using the new group.

Adding Users to Groups

Use the oneuser chgrp command to assign users to groups.

$ oneuser chgrp -v regularuser "new group"
USER 1: Group changed

$ onegroup show 100
GROUP 100 INFORMATION                                                           
ID             : 100                 
NAME           : new group           

ID              NAME                
1               regularuser         

To delete a user from a group, just move it again to the default users group.

Managing Users and Groups in Sunstone

All the described functionality is available graphically using Sunstone: