[Edgy] Why does the "Users and Group" config utility show a root user?

Mario Vukelic mario.vukelic at dantian.org
Sun Nov 5 13:27:55 UTC 2006

On Sun, 2006-11-05 at 12:59 +0000, Eamonn Sullivan wrote:
> I'm not sure why it matters that there are eight asterixes there. It's
> just decorative, but maybe a grayed out  password field would be
> better. 

I'd say because it is just not true that there is a random 8-character
password set for root. You can try all possible combinations and will
still fail to log in as root, because the account is disabled.
Quite often the question of sudo vs. root occurs on this mailing list,
and invariably someone will give the wrong answer that the default root
account in Ubuntu is set to a random password. Then someone will correct
this notion, and most of the time a discussion ensues. I always wondered
where do the idea that the default is a random password comes from ...
it seems now I know.

I believe the UI should show what is in fact the case, and not something
different. Inconsistency is always a sure way to confuse users, and the
area of security, admin rights, etc. is one where Ubuntu should avoid
confusing users.

> There are a lot of accounts on the system that can't be logged
> into directly. 

Exactly, and none of those is shown in the user config panel, so why
should root.

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