For a Cisco Smart Software Manager Test Drive installation I used the older version 8-202010 and I wanted to perform an upgrade to the latest version 8-202108. And of course it is a test drive, I did not save or wrote down the password :). In this document I’m describing how to perform a password recovery for a Cisco SSM On-Prem installation.
My virtual environment at home is based on XCP-NG, but the similar process can be used for VMware ESX environments.
Before doing any changes on the Virtual Machine it is advised to take a snapshot of the current state. The screenshot below shows the Virtual Machine snapshot in XCP-NG management center.
For the password recovery process an ISO image of CentOS 7 is required. For me, the nearest mirror is University Frankfurt.
To boot from the CentOS 7ISO image, the ISO must be “inserted” into the DVD-Drive and in Boot options the DVD-Drive must be set to the first boot device.
After the Virtual Machine booted from the CentOS 7ISO image, select as option Troubleshooting:
The next option is to select Rescue a CentOS system:
The CentOS 7 Rescue environment provides some options, the option (1) Continue starts the recovery.
The disk of the Virtual Machine is mounted from the Rescue system into the mount point /mnt/sysimage. This mount point can be activated by chroot /mnt/sysimage to perform the password recovery process:
The next steps are to change the passwords for the root and admin accounts. This can be done by entering the command passwd and passwd admin and set two new passwords.
After the password change the Virtual Machine can be powered off. The Boot options should be set back to the “normal” boot order (HDD first) and the CentOS 7ISO image can be ejected. The Virtual Machine with Cisco SSM On-Prem should then start and present its login prompt. The changed root password should be checked as well, for example with su command.