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Re: Root Logins in X...

Thomas Bendler writes:
> A root login on X is not nessaccary, in no situation (except the
> design of your installation is crap or you switch to init S and you
> have password based login enabled).

What about the case where the user auth is all off on an LDAP server
somewhere, /home is nfs mounted, and the network settings on the box are
borked for some reason?  This or a very similar use case is the norm
rather than the exception in an enterprise situation.

When confronted with a gdm session in this case, where root is the only
local user (as well as what one needs to be logged in as to fix the
network configuration), what does one do?  You need a command line
prompt to type "init S".  One could reboot, intercept grub and do "linux
single", I suppose, but using linux seems to be all about avoiding the
reboot :)

Dropping to a different console with crtl-alt-Fsomething gets you there
too.  But in either case, better hope you haven't been using the fancy
system admin GUIs which rewrite your conf files in non-obvious ways to
set up whatever service has fallen over.  More and more of the
"system-config-blah-tui" tools have fallen by the wayside over the

When confronted with the above network situation I was able to fix
things - but as we try to depreciate working at the command line, the
fraction of the user base able to fix things from a console continues to
shrink.  While unix gives you all the rope you want to hang yourself,
the current gdm default of "no root X login" hides the knife people are
expecting to be able to use to saw through the noose.


 	    Alec Habig, University of Minnesota Duluth Physics Dept.
	    		    habig neutrino d umn edu

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