Linux nisdefaults command

Updated: 01/24/2018 by Computer Hope

About nisdefaults

On Solaris, the nisdefaults command displays NIS+ default values.


The nisdefaults utility prints the default values that are returned by calls to the NIS+ local name functions. With no options specified, all defaults will be printed in a verbose format. With options, only that option is displayed in a terse form suitable for shell scripts. See the example below.

nisdefaults syntax

nisdefaults [-adghprstv]


-a Print all defaults in a terse format.
-d Print the default domain name.
-g Print the default group name.
-h Print the default host name.
-p Print the default principal name.
-r Print the default access rights with which new objects will be created.
-s Print the default directory search path.
-t Print the default time to live value.
-v Print the defaults in a verbose format. This prepends an identifying string to the output.


nisdefaults makes use of the following environment variables:

NIS_DEFAULTS This variable contains a defaults string that will override the NIS+ standard defaults. The defaults string is a series of tokens separated by colons. These tokens represent the default values to be used for the generic object properties. Legal tokens are:

ttl=time This token sets the default time to live for objects that are created. The value time is specified in the format as defined by the nischttl command. The default value is 12 hours.
owner=ownername This token specifies that the NIS+ principal ownername should own created objects. The default for this value is the principal who is executing the command.
group=groupname This token specifies that the group groupname should be the group owner for created objects. The default is NULL.
access=rights This token specifies the set of access rights that are to be granted for created objects. The value rights is specified in the format as defined by the nischmod command. The default value is:

NIS_GROUP This variable contains the name of the local NIS+ group. If the name is not fully qualified, the default domain will be appended to it.
NIS_PATH This variable overrides the default NIS+ directory search path. It contains an ordered list of directories separated by ':' (colon) characters. The '$' (dollar sign) character is treated specially. Directory names that end in '$' have the default domain appended to them, and a '$' by itself is replaced by the list of directories between the default domain and the global root that are at least two levels deep. The default NIS+ directory search path is '$'.

Refer to the Name Expansion subsection in NIS+ for more details.

nisdefaults examples


Display default NIS values. Output will appear similar to the following example:

Principal Name :
Domain Name    :
Host Name      :
Group Name     :
Access Rights  : ----rmcdr---r---
Time to live   : 12:00:00
Search Path    :

nischmod — Change access rights on an NIS+ object.
nischttl — Change the time to live value of an NIS+ object.