root has less menus

ubuntu at ubuntu at
Thu Jun 8 14:20:21 UTC 2006

Matthew Kuiken wrote:
> ubuntu at wrote:
>> Are you guys saying that gnome is so insecure that merely executing it
>> as root is a major risk?!
>> Wow...
>> Just... wow...
>> I'm glad I use KDE...
> Let's just say there is a text editor with a bug that trashes one
> directory every 10,000 folders that are browsed through while opening a
> file.  This would happen so infrequently as to be an almost impossible
> to find bug.
> If you are running that editor as a user, and the editor hits the bug,
> maybe it gets a subdirectory of your home directory, and you lose some
> data.  More likely it hits a directory you do not have write access to,
> and the damage doesn't occur.
> Run the same program as root.  The bug hits, and it is guaranteed data
> loss.  If it hits the root directory, bye-bye system.
> This is a pretty extreme example, but it should illustrate why you
> shouldn't run anything more than necessary as root.  Even a run of the
> mill ordinary bug can become a _really_ big problem when it is run as root.

To be honest, I think you guys are going a bit too far.  I just don't
see the root user as something to be afraid of.  If the bug you
mentioned above was true, then you'd be in just as much trouble with
sudo.  Don't you use a text editor to edit configuration files?  Given
how much I've been running these programs in userland and haven't wiped
out my home directory ever, I think it's safe to say we don't need to
worry about your 1/10,000 directory eating bug.  And, to be bloody
honest, I'd rather it wipe out my root partition than my /home
partition.  My root partition is easier to rebuild.  My /home is only
good up to my last backup.

It's not the way you want to run your system normally, certainly, but
I'm not afraid of the big bad root...

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