Logging in as root

Gary W. Swearingen garys at opusnet.com
Thu Jun 22 16:51:17 UTC 2006

Derek Broughton <news at pointerstop.ca> writes:

> Gary W. Swearingen wrote:
>> And, at least since the advent of the badly-named 
>> "Konsole", "text console" is rather ambiguous as to whether it means
>> only a real or virtual non-X terminal or also something like xterm or
>> Konsole.
> How so?

Because I've observed that many people reserve "text console" for a
non-X real or virtual terminal or even to just ones that get OS error
messages, AKA "system console".  Many others use it more broadly.

>  In what meaningful way is a Konsole different from a real, non-X,
> terminal.

"Meaningful" can be a moving target, but in the issue at hand, one can
"log into (or login to :) a GUI as root" with Konsole, but not from a
real, non-X terminal.  Whether one can do it from a "text console",
depends upon what that means to a reader.

BTW, in case anyone has forgot, a "real" terminal is one in an
external system, usually one with a CRT, keyboard, and a RS-232 cable.
They aren't used much these days, but many Unix systems much less
powerful than a 386 would serve dozens of terminals with people
working screen forms or even developing software.

> It's
> unusual in that the normal migration of a compound from phrase to word
> is "log in" -> "log-in" -> "login" and we appear to have skipped the
> hyphenated compound.

That would normally only occur with the noun being formed from an
adjectival phrase, like in "a log-in screen".  The phrase was no doubt
used with a hyphen back in the '60s and '70s before the "login" noun
was accepted.  (But lately, people seem to care so little for their
readers to help readers' brains properly group words by using a few
hyphens.)  Recall that "to log" earlier meant to make an entry in a
log book.

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