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Re: Root in FC10





--- On Sun, 12/7/08, Mikkel L. Ellertson <mikkel infinity-ltd com> wrote:

> From: Mikkel L. Ellertson <mikkel infinity-ltd com>
> Subject: Re: Root in FC10
> To: "Community assistance, encouragement, and advice for using Fedora." <fedora-list redhat com>
> Date: Sunday, December 7, 2008, 3:10 AM
> R. G. Newbury wrote:
> >> No - GUIs run as root are not as secure. A bug
> that would be caught
> >> when running as a user may not be caught when
> running as root.
> > 
> > A "bug" or a permissions error. Please
> explain how a BUG could or would
> > be treated differently depending on the user?
> > 
> Trying to read or write a file or device you do not have
> permission
> to access. A program that tries to use all system resources
> - users
> have strictor limits then root does.
> 
> >> The more code you have running as root, the
> greater the chance of
> >> running into problems. 
> > 
> > This is illogical and not relevant to the point which
> you are attempting
> > to make. The vast majority of user, including myself,
> do not write the
> > code we run. And the exploit rate in code has nothing
> to do with the
> > amount of code you have running. Lots of code is
> basically impervious to
> > external exploit while being run, because it does not
> talk to or
> > interact with the external world.
> > 
> He is not primarily talking about exploits, though that is
> part of
> it. The damage that can be done by a bug in a program are
> much
> greater if the program is running as root. This is one
> reason that
> SUID programs drop privileges as soon as they no longer
> need them.
> 
> > If you are referring to the underlying OS, it ALWAYS
> runs as whatever,
> > often as root. A 'root' user doesn't to my
> understanding run 'more' code
> > than a user does...and in any event, all of that code
> is still there to
> > be exploited whichever user is running on top of it
> (if that code is
> > capable of being exploited at all).
> > 
> You are not understanding what is being said - it is not
> they root
> is running more programs, but more programs are running
> with root
> privileges when you log in as root. Process that would
> normally be
> run as a normal user are being run as root.
> 
> > Then again, it is a lot easier to shoot
> >> yourself in the foot running as root using the
> GUI. How may times
> >> have we seen someone on the list that changed
> permissions, or
> >> deleted the wrong file, and needs help to get the
> system running again.
> > 
> > THIS HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH SECURITY. You are just
> trying to play
> > 'nanny'. The saying is: "To err is
> human". We are ALL human. Get over it
> > and stop trying to tie people's hands just because
> you will not be there
> > to hold them. AND this has nothing to do with logging
> in as root. Any
> > user, who through ignorance or stupidity (or both)
> changes permissions
> > or deletes the wrong file, is NOT interacting with
> "security" when he
> > does those things. He is using the OS, which does
> *exactly* what he
> > tells it to do, whether or not that is what he thought
> he wanted it to
> > do. And the only PROPER response to that, after the
> fact, is to explain
> > what he did (fix the ignorance bit:
> "ignorant" from "does not know") and
> > hope that he remembers it (you cannot fix the stupid
> bit). Oh,  and say,
> > Don't do that again.
> > 
> > Sorta like your mother probably did many times when
> you were a child.
> > But it is time to stop playing parent to everyone.
> > 
> > Geoff
> > 
> Nope - we are not trying to play 'nanny'. If you do
> not see what
> this has to do with security, then I feel sorry for you,
> and hope
> that it is just your home system that you are putting at
> risk. The
> defaults are to protect people that are learning. You could
> think of
> it this way - you child-prof your home when you have small
> children
> because it is hard to learn when learning kills you. How
> much does a
> new user learn when the only fix is to re-install the
> system? How
> much does it cost if your bring down the network at work
> because you
> made a mistake when running as root? Just killing your
> desktop at
> work is going to cost in lost productivity. (Unless you are
> not
> productive at work anyway - then having your system trashed
> may stop
> you from lowering others productivity.)
> 
> Mikkel
> -- 
> 
>   Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons,
> for thou art crunchy and taste good with Ketchup!
> 
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R.G. Newbury-> I could not have sai it better...thanks!


      


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