Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 28th Feb 2012 23:11 UTC
Linux Linus Torvalds on requiring the root password for mundane tasks. "So here's a plea: if you have anything to do with security in a distro, and think that my kids (replace 'my kids' with 'sales people on the road' if you think your main customers are businesses) need to have the root password to access some wireless network, or to be able to print out a paper, or to change the date-and-time settings, please just kill yourself now. The world will be a better place." Yes, it's harsh (deal with it, Finns don't beat around the bush), but he's completely and utterly right. While there's cases where it makes sense to disable certain settings (public terminals, for instance), it is utterly idiotic that regular home users have to type in their root password for such mundane tasks.
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RE: The opposite is also true...
by Soulbender on Wed 29th Feb 2012 05:07 UTC in reply to "The opposite is also true..."
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This is something Ubuntu does via its sudo system and it's 100% wrong - -asks that can significantly change your system installation should require a privileged username/password and not a normal user's!

Your understanding of sudo is 100% wrong. What security do you think having to use the root password rather than your own gives? Hint: none. They're both passwords that you have to give and neither has an inherent security advantage over the other.
This is exactly how sudo is designed to work and it means that you can delegate privileges better than if you use a single root password.

it only accepts your own (unprivileged - or at least it should be) password!

There's no such thing as an unprivileged password. There are accounts with more or less privileges.

The very first thing I do on such a broken Ubuntu system is "sudo passwd root", so that I can su to root and do my privileged stuff that way

Never work as root, use sudo or if you really think you need to continue this bad practice: sudo su -

Genius that, because Ubuntu sets a random root password and never tells you it, ho hum.

root on Ubuntu has an empty password, not a random one, and that is why you can't log in with it. Accounts with empty passwords can by default not have interactive sessions.
And no, Ubuntu does not prompt you for the root password when fsck has to be run at boot.

Edited 2012-02-29 05:19 UTC

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