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   VV       VV  LL          OOO       CCCCC  KK   KK
    VV     VV   LL        OO   OO   CC       KK KK    originally written by
     VV   VV    LL       OO     OO  CC       KK        Michael K. Johnson
      VV VV     LL        OO   OO   CC       KK KK    for Linux Journal
       VVV      LLLLLLLL    OOO       CCCCC  KK   KK

This is vlock, the Linux _V_irtual Console locking program.  It allows
you to lock one or all of the sessions of your Linux console display.

Usage is very simple; by default, vlock locks the single console or
terminal you are on.  If you want to lock the console completely so that
no one else can log into any of the virtual consoles (perhaps because
you have login sessions running on several other virtual consoles at the
same time), you use the -a or --all flag to cause vlock to not allow any
user to switch to any console without typing your password.

  WARNING: If you lock all the consoles, they will be *really*
  locked.  Unless you have a serial terminal, or can log in
  remotely to kill vlock, you *will not* be able to get back to
  your terminal session without correct authentication.

  After a new installation always test vlock in a terminal to
  verify that authentication is set up correctly.

  If you loose data because you have to reset your computer
  because of vlock -a, it is your own problem, not mine.  I
  warned you.

The root user will *always* be able to unlock any vlock session, unless
disabled at compile time.

vlock consists of several plugins.  Some of them are potentially
dangerous and access to them should be restricted.  Please refer to
SECURITY for a detailed description.

"vlock -h" or "vlock --help" will get you a help message.

To make vlock switch to a new console before locking, use the -n or
--new flag.  If installed with proper permissions this even works from
an X11 session.  The -n flag implies -a and thus all warnings about -a
also apply to -n.

vlock is maintained by Frank Benkstein <>.