sudo versus #

Loïc Grenié loic.grenie at
Wed Feb 10 21:32:23 UTC 2010

2010/2/10 KAYVEN RIESE <kayve at>:
> It's my understanding that the sudo command basically executes the
> subsequent command as superuser.  I fail to see the difference between
> having a # prompt logged into superuser and sudo, other than ensuring that
> you don't make mistakes, unless having the terminal open can allow
> attackers to infiltrate the system?  I have been using command line unix
> for a long time.  I don't make mistakes.  What is the real implications of
> sudo?

    I don't really understand what you mean, but I think it's better to have
  a "normal user" shell and sudo sometimes. You can sudo bash (dash,
  zsh, csh, tcsh) if you want to type several "root" commands.

> Also, I notice that when Ubuntu gives me those update dialog boxes my root
> password doesn't work to allow the installation to go forward.  This makes
> me irritated, because it instead wants my normal user password, which for
> me by design is a weaker password that I use for more things and thus
> could be more easily cracked.  My root password is longer and I use it for
> less things.  Both are immune to dictionary attack, but it bothers me the
> way this subverts my configuration.

    This is the way Ubuntu is meant to be. If you don't like it, it is a bit
  difficult (I think) to modify. As far as I know (I've not reinstalled lately),
  root does not have a password by default (which can be a real problem
  sometimes if, for instance, you need to type root password for a failed
  fsck on boot).


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