Help with installation

Mateusz Kijowski mateusz_kijowski at
Sun Jan 29 14:35:58 UTC 2006

Dnia niedziela, 29 stycznia 2006 15:07, Sasha Tsykin napisał:
> Mateusz Kijowski wrote:
> >> There is no su in Ubuntu.
> >
> > This is *not* true.
> >
> > $ dpkg -L login | grep bin/su
> >    /bin/su
> >
> > Also, doing su <username> works as expected.
> su exists in ubuntu, but is not enabled by default. this means that
> unless you activate it, you can not use the su account. Instead you use
> the sudo command which emulates the su account. The su account can be
> activated by setting a root password.
> Sasha

Sasha, you obviously do not know what are you talking about. There is no such 
thing as "the su account". "su" is a program, it stands for "switch user", 
and is used just to do that - to switch current UID. There is also a similar 
tool - "sg" which stands for switch group.

Reading the su manpage would tell you that su [username] is the normal way to 
use su. If username is not specified it defaults to 'root', so "su" and "su 
root" does the same thing.

If su is invoked by an user that is not root it asks for the password of the 
user you want to switch to.

Having said that, it is obvious that when the root account is disabled, you 
cant switch to the root user using either "su root" or "su", because 
disabling the root account means setting the password hash to a impossible 
value - that is a value which will be not generated by any password string.

Hope I cleared it out for you a little bit.

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