How to Add Users in Linux From the KDE Plasma Desktop

Adding New Users is a Couple of Clicks Away

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Linux is a multi-user environment. That means you can have as many users on a system as you need. Each user can log into their own, secure, account and have access to all of the installed applications. When you first install Linux, you’ll have created a single user that you log in with. What if your computer is to be used by the family, or in a small business? If that’s the case, you’ll want to create individual users, so other people don’t have access to your information.

Creating new users is actually quite simple. How simple? Let’s find out how to do this on the KDE Plasma desktop.

How We Tested

For this demonstration, we used the KDE Neon distribution, running KDE Plasma 5.15. The version of KDE Plasma you use won’t affect this process.

The GUI Method

First we’re going to do this the easy way … with a GUI. To open the necessary GUI, follow these steps:

  1. Click on the KDE Plasma menu button.

    KDE Plasma menu button on Linux desktop
  2. Click System Settings.

    Screenshot of the KDE Plasma menu.
  3. Click Account Details.

    Screenshot of the Account Details entry in Settings.
  4. Click User Manager.

    Screenshot of the User Manager entry.
  5. In the resulting window, click +.

    Screenshot of the + button.
  6. Fill out the details for the user (Username, Real Name, Email Address, Password).

    Screenshot of the user information entry area.
  7. If the user is to be an administrator, check the box for Enable administrator privileges for this user.

    Screenshot of the Enable administator privileges checkbox.
  8. Click Apply.

    Screenshot of the Apply button.
  9. Close the System Settings window.

At this point you can log out of KDE and log in with the newly created user.

The Command Line Method

We’re going to do the same thing, only via the command line. You’ll be surprised at how simple this task is, even from the command line. Here’s how you add a new user with this method:

  1. Click on the KDE Plasma menu button.

    KDE Plasma menu button on Linux desktop
  2. Click Terminal.

    Screenshot of the Terminal entry in the KDE Plasma menu.
  3. In the terminal window, issue the command

    sudo adduser USERNAME

    where USERNAME is the name of the new user to be added. When prompted, type your user's superuser (sudo) password.

  4. When prompted, enter and verify a password for the new user and then answer the questions. These questions are optional, but you should at minimum fill out the Full Name option.

    Screenshot of adding a usr with the adduser command.
  5. Type Y to save the information.

Once again, you’ve added a new user to your Linux machine. You can log out of the current user and log into the newly created user.

As Many Users As Needed

One of the nice things about Linux is that you can add as many users as you need to a system (so long as the system has the necessary storage space). In fact, on 64-bit platform you can have more than 16e18 different user IDs. Not that you’d ever need that many, but at least you know the operating system is capable.