Make being root more obvious (scary)

Who mailforwho at
Wed Mar 4 16:27:10 GMT 2009

I am sending this again without the attachment to avoid
ubuntu-desktop's file size limit. Please see
for the attachment I discuss. Sorry to those on the art list who will
see this twice.

Original Message:

Hi all,

in XFCE, Thunar and Mousepad do a nice trick of having a red box when
you're running the app as superuser to warn you that bad things could

I really like this, I think it makes it really clear that you need to
watch out. I tried some ways to replicate it on Ubuntu/GNOME. I came
up with a solution that gives a really clear clue to the user that
doesn't require any apps to be modified (see the screenshot). It is

Create or choose a read icon and gtk theme, place those in the .icons
and .themes directory in /root, and then make that theme have the same
name as the icon and gtk themes being used by the user - obviously
when a user changes their theme this will be lost, but many people
don't change their theme (arguable those who do don't need such cues)
and there might be a way to adapt it to make it more flexible...

Here is a screenshot to demonstrate what I'm talking about... Nothing
says 'beware' like red folder icons, right?
In that screenshot you can also see the way red bar in Thunar.

What do people think - worth pursuing?


More information about the ubuntu-desktop mailing list