root password?

Peter Garrett peter.garrett at
Sun Feb 3 08:44:49 UTC 2008

On Sat, 02 Feb 2008 20:59:58 -0800
"Knute Johnson" <knute at> wrote:

> I installed 7.10 onto a USB jump drive and tried to create a new 
> user.  In the process I did something bad to the sudoers file.  I 
> can't edit it because I can't sudo.  I can't login as root because I 
> don't know the password.  What's the password for root on the live 
> CD?

There isn't one - just type 

sudo -i 

for a root prompt on the Ubuntu live CD.

However, to recover your /etc/sudoers file, you could boot in
"recovery" mode from the hard drive - this will give you a root prompt
from which you can run the command


to edit /etc/sudoers . By default on Ubuntu, visudo uses the "nano"
editor, which is not exactly what you'd expect ;) Nano is pretty easy to
use though - type your changes, hit ctrl+x and you will be asked if you
want to save on exit. The default sudoers file looks like this ( these are
the important lines)

# User privilege specification
root    ALL=(ALL) ALL

# Members of the admin group may gain root privileges
%admin ALL=(ALL) ALL

Obviously, your desired sudo user also needs to be in the "admin" group for
that to work. If that isn't the case, just type ( as root)

adduser <yourusername> admin


"INX Is Not X" Live CD based on Ubuntu 7.04 :
Screenshots slideshow:
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