Different accounts and sudo. (Was: Re: Root password???)

Yuki Cuss celtic at sairyx.org
Fri Apr 7 07:22:21 UTC 2006

On Thu, 2006-04-06 at 20:25 -0500, ZephyrQ wrote:
> 	This brings up a minor issue for me.
> 	I've just recently come to Ubuntu through Libranet (the 'it just works' 
> part finally sold me...even after I shelled out $ for all 14 CDs of 
> Etch) but I've had to change some administrative habits because of the 
> whole "sudo/root password" thing:
> 	I run several desktops for different members of the family...each has 
> their own archives as well.  Yesterday, my daughter needed her stuff 
> from the archive (pre-ubuntu) which is owned only by the admin (root). 
> I opened a terminal, ran 'sudo <file manager of choice>' and it asked 
> for a password.  I entered my own (first user).  No dice.  I entered 
> hers, I was not able to access her archive.  I had to log out of her 
> desktop (during much teenage whining) to enter mine so I could transfer 
> the necessary files.
> 	This, IMHO, shouldn't happen this way.  Did I miss something about the 
> whole 'sudo' thing?  It took me a week to figure it out when I first 
> installed, so I prolly missed something...

It certainly should happen this way.

Sudo is not just a replacement name for su. It works in that you enter
the password of the _logged on user_ and, if that user has been
authorised, they will execute the command as root.

Therefore, you do not enter your own password, but your daughters; *if*
she has been granted access by you. (ie. placing her in the `admin'

If not, simply entering your password won't work: it's expecting your
daughters. In that case, you can change to your user, who is in
`admin' (the first user created is in admin by default), with `su
SOMEUSER,' and from there you can use sudo and enter your password again
(yes, again).

Hope it helps,
 - Yuki.

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