Trouble Logging In as Root

CLIFFORD ILKAY clifford_ilkay at
Sun Nov 9 07:47:46 UTC 2008

hippie dream wrote:
> Hello,
> I am having trouble logging in as root on a fresh install of Ubuntu 8.10.
> During the setup process, I was prompted to give a password which I can use
> perfectly to install programs and make most changes. However, I think the
> system only set me up as a administrator because when I try to login as root
> I receive this message:
> sam at sam-laptop:~$ su root
> Password: 
> su: Authentication failure
> sam at sam-laptop:~$ 
> Am I missing something really obvious here? How can setup my computer so
> that I can login as root? I have all my files backed up so if another fresh
> install is required that is certainly as possibility. 


Ignore the advice to set a root password. To do things that need root
privileges, for example to install software, do:

sudo apt-get install foo

I keep a root shell open most of the time, which I get by doing:

sudo -i

When you're prompted for the password, just enter the password that you
assigned to the first account you created.

Clifford Ilkay
1419-3266 Yonge St.
Toronto, ON
Canada  M4N 3P6

+1 416-410-3326
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