Sudo vs. root

Dotan Cohen dotancohen at
Fri Apr 16 20:54:09 UTC 2010

I have a neighbor who runs some Java server on his Ubuntu machine. He
actually logs into the GUI as root and then runs the server from the
terminal. He is no computer guru, this is how he was taught to do it.
He insists that he has tried to start the server with sudo from a
regular user account, but that it "doesn't work": it starts but does
not serve. I will go over there on Sunday to take a look at the
machine, but before I go I'd like to know if there is any real
difference between running an application as root vs. running with

If it makes a difference, the server is started by a Bash script that
sets some environment parameters first, then starts the server. It
serves http requests for an online game in development, usually very
small requests a few kilobytes at a time and no real load at this
stage. It's written in Java. I don't know what language the clients
are written in, I suppose Java as well.

Dotan Cohen

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