Why is my {mysql, htpassswd, getpass} prompts not showing?

I had problem on a VM running linux of password prompts not showing. What would happen is that the mysql command would just say wrong password without prompting even if I added the -p switch. Furthermore, the less command and man pages were broken as well! As a programmer I set out to narrow down the scope of the problem via looking a source code. I traced down the offending function as getpass(). Having searched every where on the web, I finally came across a reference telling the tty might be broken and to run:

mknod /dev/tty c 5 0

That immediately fixed it! device nodes are a bit of mystery to me, tty’s more so. One day I’ll understand it thoroughly.

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