GEEKY WARNING! This article is not for the faint of heart. I’ll be using terminal and the “dreaded” command line. I just thought I would share it for those people who do use Terminal, those would probably be systems administrators or those savvy OS X/Unix users.

This little article is going to let you display a welcoming message to anyone who logs into your computer via SSH (secure shell). Currently the message is set to something For people who runs servers you could put up a message like:

This computer system is for authorized users only. All activity is logged and regulary checked by systems personal. Individuals using this system without authority or in excess of their authority are subject to having all their services revoked. Any illegal services run by user or attempts to take down this server or its services will be reported to local law enforcement, and said user will be punished to the full extent of the law. Anyone using this system consents to these terms.

For a home user you could write something like:

Welcome back, have fun today!!

First, go into your Utilities folder (Applications—> Utilities) and find the program called Terminal. Open it up! Type in su your admin username. You’ll be prompted for your admin password which you’ll want to type in and hit enter. When you type the password nothing will appear which is fine. That’s just a security feature. Now you’l be logged in as the admin. Now type in sudo nano -w /etc/motd. Now if you’re wondering what that command does, sudo means you want to run the following command as an admin user, nano is a command line text editor, -w mean you want to write and /etc/motd is the file you want to edit. So here you can see we’re going to edit the motd file, being message of the day.

You’ll notice the terminal screen changes and now you can type your message in. When you’ve typed in your message hit, Ctrl+O which saves the message and then hit Ctrl+X. This will exit you from nano and back to the normal Terminal screen. You can then exit out of Terminal and then re-open it. This time you should notice your new welcome message being displayed!

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