Dumb question of the week. - Suse

This is a discussion on Dumb question of the week. - Suse ; "Theo v. Werkhoven" writes: >The carbonbased lifeform Paul J Gans inspired alt.os.linux.suse with: >> "Blattus Slafaly 0/00 " wrote: >>>How do you change to su or root in KDE when a KDE program requires Root >>>privs? That is ...

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Thread: Dumb question of the week.

  1. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    "Theo v. Werkhoven" writes:

    >The carbonbased lifeform Paul J Gans inspired alt.os.linux.suse with:
    >> "Blattus Slafaly 0/00 " wrote:
    >>>How do you change to su or root in KDE when a KDE program requires Root
    >>>privs? That is without ending the entire session and logging into KDE
    >>>as root with the bomb screen and everything. I'm just thinking about
    >>>su'ing in a console terminal and executing the KDE program from the
    >>>command line? Is that the way? Just tried it, seems to work. If there is
    >>>another way, let me know. Thanks.

    >>
    >> Pay no attention to the insults. Some folks do that.


    >And sometimes well deserved too.


    >> Let me give you (and them) an example. Say I want to
    >> run "ifconfig" to check on something with my network
    >> connection. You cannot run that as a normal user because
    >> it will not be found by a normal user's search path.
    >>
    >> What I do is in a console window run (the $ is the prompt)
    >>
    >> $ su
    >>
    >> which asks for a password and then (in 10.3 at least) gives
    >> me a blood-red prompt. I can then type
    >>
    >> $ ifconfig
    >>
    >> and it runs. I then do


    >Not if /sbin isn't in your PATH already, and then you can also run it as
    >user.
    >Rtfm; 'su' by itself doesn't change the enviroment variables.


    That depends on where the path is defined. If it is in root's .bashrc then
    su by itself is fine. It runs .bashrc. If the path is defined in
    ..bash_profile, then you have trouble.




    >Only if I use su with '-', so it gives me a login shell, do I get root's
    >PATH

    ......
    That is because of the way you define the PATH.


  2. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    Nikos Chantziaras wrote:
    > Those executables are unlikely to be used by "users", except the user
    > who is also root. At home, it means you So instead of worrying
    > about su, the simplest solution is to put /sbin and /usr/sbin in your
    > PATH (~/.bashrc) and use sudo and kdesu or sux.


    That is the worst advice ever.
    First many peole have family, friends, kids, others on their machine as
    well. Secondly it trains you bad behaviour.
    Secondly your advice has nothing to do with su, otherwise you would not
    say: use sux.

    If anything, just make a symlink to the few programs you actulay need it
    for. (in ~/bin or /usr/local/bin)
    Most likely those programs are just ifconfig and traceroute.

    The reasoning why it is a bad idea? If it wasn't, people in the last 30+
    years of Unix would have do so already.

    > Oh, and ifconfig needs root if changing interface parameters.



    houghi
    --

    You are standing at the end of a road before a small brick building.
    Around you is a forest. A small stream flows out of the building and
    down a gully.

  3. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    houghi wrote:
    >Paul J Gans wrote:
    >> Let me give you (and them) an example. Say I want to
    >> run "ifconfig" to check on something with my network
    >> connection. You cannot run that as a normal user because
    >> it will not be found by a normal user's search path.
    >>
    >> What I do is in a console window run (the $ is the prompt)
    >>
    >> $ su
    >>
    >> which asks for a password and then (in 10.3 at least) gives
    >> me a blood-red prompt. I can then type
    >>
    >> $ ifconfig
    >>
    >> and it runs. I then do


    >If you were in school this would get you just enough to pass class. ;-)


    >Now if the GP has enough information, the following will just confuse
    >hime, making me flink class altogether. :-D


    >There is more to it. On openSUSE this will work, because su is set the
    >same as `su -`. I still use `su -`.


    What was the name of this newsgroup again?

    --
    --- Paul J. Gans

  4. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    Holger Petersen wrote:
    >Paul J Gans writes:



    >>Let me give you (and them) an example. Say I want to
    >>run "ifconfig" to check on something with my network


    >IF you only want to 'check' something...


    >>connection. You cannot run that as a normal user because
    >>it will not be found by a normal user's search path.


    > ... then just say " /sbin/ifconfig " as a simle user..!



    >Nothing hinders you to start a programm with it's full path.
    >Either as a user (notable for /usr/sbin/traceroute ) nor
    >as root. I have some system, there " /usr/local/bin " is NOT
    >in the PARH of root. So I start some program ther with it's
    >full path.


    >Yours, Holger


    That is correct. However, the question was from a relative
    newbie. Your answer requires knowing how to find out where
    ifconfig is located.

    So in my answer I left out the more complex things. Complexity
    for its own sake is not educational.

    --
    --- Paul J. Gans

  5. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    marksouth wrote:
    >On Sun, 16 Mar 2008 04:02:21 +0000, Paul J Gans wrote:


    >> Let me give you (and them) an example. Say I want to run "ifconfig" to
    >> check on something with my network connection. You cannot run that as a
    >> normal user because it will not be found by a normal user's search path.


    >/sbin/ifconfig works as a normal user under nearly every distro I've ever
    >used :-)


    How did you know it was in /sbin?

    No wonder newbies don't stick around here long. Between the
    insults and the obfuscated answers they get nowhere.

    --
    --- Paul J. Gans

  6. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    houghi wrote:
    > Nikos Chantziaras wrote:
    >> Those executables are unlikely to be used by "users", except the user
    >> who is also root. At home, it means you So instead of worrying
    >> about su, the simplest solution is to put /sbin and /usr/sbin in your
    >> PATH (~/.bashrc) and use sudo and kdesu or sux.

    >
    > That is the worst advice ever.


    It's not.


    > First many peole have family, friends, kids, others on their machine as
    > well.


    So? Did anymore say you have to alter their PATH too? Only the machine
    owner's (the one who's got root).


    > Secondly it trains you bad behaviour.


    It doesn't.


    > Secondly your advice has nothing to do with su, otherwise you would not
    > say: use sux.


    I don't know what sux is; you mentioned it. From your description, it
    probably is kdesu without kde.


    > If anything, just make a symlink to the few programs you actulay need it
    > for. (in ~/bin or /usr/local/bin)
    > Most likely those programs are just ifconfig and traceroute.
    >
    > The reasoning why it is a bad idea? If it wasn't, people in the last 30+
    > years of Unix would have do so already.


    They actually have done so already. Most users who have sudo ALL access
    have those dirs in their path.

    The default is obviously to not have them in the PATH. If a user gets
    sudo ALL access, he puts them in the PATH. Simple, secure,
    straightforward, and nothing wrong with it.

    Also, you failed to explain why you think it's wrong. No, "last 30
    years" doesn't count. You have to bring some arguments.

  7. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    Paul J Gans wrote:
    >>There is more to it. On openSUSE this will work, because su is set the
    >>same as `su -`. I still use `su -`.

    >
    > What was the name of this newsgroup again?


    Amerca On Linines Suze Randall?

    houghi
    --

    You are standing at the end of a road before a small brick building.
    Around you is a forest. A small stream flows out of the building and
    down a gully.

  8. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    Paul J Gans wrote:
    > marksouth wrote:
    >>On Sun, 16 Mar 2008 04:02:21 +0000, Paul J Gans wrote:

    >
    >>> Let me give you (and them) an example. Say I want to run "ifconfig" to
    >>> check on something with my network connection. You cannot run that as a
    >>> normal user because it will not be found by a normal user's search path.

    >
    >>/sbin/ifconfig works as a normal user under nearly every distro I've ever
    >>used :-)

    >
    > How did you know it was in /sbin?


    By doing `pin bin/ifconfig`. Either that or by looking at the
    sourcecode. Why? ;-)

    houghi
    --

    You are standing at the end of a road before a small brick building.
    Around you is a forest. A small stream flows out of the building and
    down a gully.

  9. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    houghi wrote:
    >Nikos Chantziaras wrote:
    >> Those executables are unlikely to be used by "users", except the user
    >> who is also root. At home, it means you So instead of worrying
    >> about su, the simplest solution is to put /sbin and /usr/sbin in your
    >> PATH (~/.bashrc) and use sudo and kdesu or sux.


    >That is the worst advice ever.
    >First many peole have family, friends, kids, others on their machine as
    >well. Secondly it trains you bad behaviour.
    >Secondly your advice has nothing to do with su, otherwise you would not
    >say: use sux.


    >If anything, just make a symlink to the few programs you actulay need it
    >for. (in ~/bin or /usr/local/bin)
    >Most likely those programs are just ifconfig and traceroute.


    >The reasoning why it is a bad idea? If it wasn't, people in the last 30+
    >years of Unix would have do so already.


    >> Oh, and ifconfig needs root if changing interface parameters.


    I LOVE IT.

    A guy asks a question. It gets answered. And a huge thread
    results just to determine who is the most clever around here.

    OK: This is daddy talking. Among other things this forum is
    supposed to do is to provide HELP to newbies. Provide that
    help as directly and simply as you can. If you can't, don't
    answer the question.

    And if you do answer, be polite when doing so. We don't need
    a reputation like the posters from AOL earned from themselves a
    few years back.

    We should be trying to help folks use openSUSE, not discouraging
    them.

    --
    --- Paul J. Gans

  10. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    On Sun, 16 Mar 2008, houghi wrote:-

    >David Bolt wrote:
    >> There's been a change since the last time I looked at this. It used to
    >> be that using "su" didn't change $PATH to include /sbin or /usr/sbin,
    >> but now it does. Still doesn't give the full root environment or $PATH
    >> though:

    >
    >I believe this was in a release notes of one of the versions. I am sure
    >I have seen it mentioned somewhere.


    I don't always read the release notes, so it wouldn't surprise me if it
    was there and I missed it.

    >> By default, su _used to_ set $HOME and $SHELL, and also $USER and
    >> $LOGNAME for non-root users, but didn't touch $PATH.

    >
    >That has changed.


    I've noticed.

    >Unfortunatly I can not remeber when or where I saw it.
    >Looked up google and also mailinglists, but I was unable to find it in
    >my 5 minute search.


    It must have happened with 10.1, or possibly before that. I know 9.3
    didn't have that behaviour but 10.1 does. Since I no longer have a 10.0
    system available, I don't know if that one did or didn't.

    >The main reason was that you did not need to type su - anymore and there
    >was no real security reason NOT to do it.


    It's still not the same. Using su on its own doesn't get the same
    environment as either "su -" or logging in as root on a console.


    Regards,
    David Bolt

    --
    www.davjam.org/lifetype/ www.distributed.net: OGR@100Mnodes, RC5-72@15Mkeys
    SUSE 10.1 32bit | openSUSE 10.2 32bit | openSUSE 10.3 32bit | openSUSE 11.0a1
    SUSE 10.1 64bit | openSUSE 10.2 64bit | openSUSE 10.3 64bit
    RISC OS 3.6 | TOS 4.02 | openSUSE 10.3 PPC |RISC OS 3.11

  11. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    Paul J Gans wrote:
    > A guy asks a question. It gets answered. And a huge thread
    > results just to determine who is the most clever around here.


    No reason, thasts me. I never makes mistaskes so it musts be me.


    houghi
    --

    You are standing at the end of a road before a small brick building.
    Around you is a forest. A small stream flows out of the building and
    down a gully.

  12. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    David Bolt wrote:
    > I don't always read the release notes, so it wouldn't surprise me if it
    > was there and I missed it.


    I scan them during the instalation. Sometimes it is 'OK, I didn't know
    that'

    >>The main reason was that you did not need to type su - anymore and there
    >>was no real security reason NOT to do it.

    >
    > It's still not the same. Using su on its own doesn't get the same
    > environment as either "su -" or logging in as root on a console.


    I know, but it was something to that extend.

    houghi
    --

    You are standing at the end of a road before a small brick building.
    Around you is a forest. A small stream flows out of the building and
    down a gully.

  13. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    On Sun, 16 Mar 2008 16:48:54 +0000, Paul J Gans wrote:

    > marksouth wrote:
    >>On Sun, 16 Mar 2008 04:02:21 +0000, Paul J Gans wrote:

    >
    >>> Let me give you (and them) an example. Say I want to run "ifconfig"
    >>> to check on something with my network connection. You cannot run that
    >>> as a normal user because it will not be found by a normal user's
    >>> search path.

    >
    >>/sbin/ifconfig works as a normal user under nearly every distro I've
    >>ever used :-)

    >
    > How did you know it was in /sbin?


    Dunno for sure. Mostly when I recall a command and the first part
    doesn't respond to tab completion, I try /sbin next.

    > No wonder newbies don't stick around here long. Between the insults and
    > the obfuscated answers they get nowhere.


    I'm a little offended by this. You seem to be implying that I'm
    insulting newbies, or providing an obfuscated answer.

    All I did was point out that a normal user can run ifconfig if they know
    the path. How that got to accusations of insults and obfuscation is
    difficult to understand from where I'm sitting.

  14. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    On Sun, 16 Mar 2008, Paul J Gans wrote:-

    >marksouth wrote:


    >>/sbin/ifconfig works as a normal user under nearly every distro I've ever
    >>used :-)

    >
    >How did you know it was in /sbin?


    Logic. It's used while the system is booting. Since /usr could be
    mounted as an NFS mounted file system, that would require a network
    connection. If it's under /usr and that's on an NFS mounted file system,
    you can't mount it, which means that it can't be under /usr . That
    reduces the possible paths down to /sbin or /bin , and since /bin is in
    a normal users $PATH, and ifconfig isn't in any of the directories in a
    normal users $PATH, that leaves us with just /sbin .

    Now, I don't expect a newbie to know that. Up until eleven years ago, I
    know I didn't. As luck had it, I didn't need to ask much in the way of
    questions. I was able to read the provided documentation, and read
    through newsgroups, including the archives at Deja News, to be able to
    find out what I needed to know.

    Another reason was that I wasn't afraid to do things like look around to
    see what's available, and then try anything that was interesting to see
    what it did. If what I did was enough to cause the system to break, I
    got two lessons for the price of one. I learnt what the application did,
    and also learnt how to fix the problems I caused by (mis)using it.


    Regards,
    David Bolt

    --
    www.davjam.org/lifetype/ www.distributed.net: OGR@100Mnodes, RC5-72@15Mkeys
    SUSE 10.1 32bit | openSUSE 10.2 32bit | openSUSE 10.3 32bit | openSUSE 11.0a1
    SUSE 10.1 64bit | openSUSE 10.2 64bit | openSUSE 10.3 64bit
    RISC OS 3.6 | TOS 4.02 | openSUSE 10.3 PPC |RISC OS 3.11

  15. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    The carbonbased lifeform Paul J Gans inspired alt.os.linux.suse with:
    > marksouth wrote:
    >>On Sun, 16 Mar 2008 04:02:21 +0000, Paul J Gans wrote:

    >
    >>> Let me give you (and them) an example. Say I want to run "ifconfig" to
    >>> check on something with my network connection. You cannot run that as a
    >>> normal user because it will not be found by a normal user's search path.

    >
    >>/sbin/ifconfig works as a normal user under nearly every distro I've ever
    >>used :-)

    >
    > How did you know it was in /sbin?
    >
    > No wonder newbies don't stick around here long. Between the
    > insults and the obfuscated answers they get nowhere.


    Newbies learn by (lots of) reading and going through the OS hierarchie
    looking for stuff and studying scripts (in) etc.
    I for one am not prepared to dumb down technically correct answers, just
    because a newbie doesn't immediatly "get" it. That would be like using
    baby-talk to a foreigner in your country, to make it "easy" to understand
    for that person. Nevermind that that foreigner subsequently only knows
    how to use baby-talk speaking to other people.

    I expect a newbie to ask a specific question, or go to any of the
    numerous documentation sites, or to the builtin help system, if he sees
    something unclear.

    Theo
    --
    theo at van-werkhoven.nl ICQ:277217131 SuSE Linux
    linuxcounter.org: 99872 Jabber:muadib at jabber.xs4all.nl AMD XP3000+ 1024MB
    "ik _heb_ niets tegen Microsoft, ik heb iets tegen
    de uitwassen *van* Microsoft"

  16. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    Theo v. Werkhoven wrote:
    > Newbies learn by (lots of) reading and going through the OS hierarchie
    > looking for stuff and studying scripts (in) etc.


    Then I was never a newbie and neither anybody else I know in real life.
    I learn by diving in and making mistakes. By doing a `rm -rf *` in the
    wrong directory as root and by generaly trying out whatever I think is
    logical at that moment, including pressen on buttons that thell me 'do
    not press here'.

    I hardly pick anything up by reading. I looked for stuff and tried it
    out. I never studies scripts in /etc.

    > I for one am not prepared to dumb down technically correct answers, just
    > because a newbie doesn't immediatly "get" it. That would be like using
    > baby-talk to a foreigner in your country, to make it "easy" to understand
    > for that person. Nevermind that that foreigner subsequently only knows
    > how to use baby-talk speaking to other people.


    If I can choose between babytalk and no comunication at all, I know what
    I am opting for. I can get by with baby-language often, thank you. I do
    not need to study a language for several years first.

    I have known people who after several years still are not interested in
    speaking the language I am in and others from the same origin are able
    to speak it after a year or so.

    So if dumbing down answers (as long as they are a solution for the
    problem) then I am willing to do that. I know how frustrating it can be
    if you first need to know A, so you can use B and need to know B before
    you can use A.

    > I expect a newbie to ask a specific question, or go to any of the
    > numerous documentation sites, or to the builtin help system, if he sees
    > something unclear.


    I expect to win the lottery.

    houghi
    --

    You are standing at the end of a road before a small brick building.
    Around you is a forest. A small stream flows out of the building and
    down a gully.

  17. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    houghi wrote:
    >Paul J Gans wrote:
    >> marksouth wrote:
    >>>On Sun, 16 Mar 2008 04:02:21 +0000, Paul J Gans wrote:

    >>
    >>>> Let me give you (and them) an example. Say I want to run "ifconfig" to
    >>>> check on something with my network connection. You cannot run that as a
    >>>> normal user because it will not be found by a normal user's search path.

    >>
    >>>/sbin/ifconfig works as a normal user under nearly every distro I've ever
    >>>used :-)

    >>
    >> How did you know it was in /sbin?


    >By doing `pin bin/ifconfig`. Either that or by looking at the
    >sourcecode. Why? ;-)


    Because NEWBIES don't know about pin and likely don't have
    the source code loaded even if they can read it.

    --
    --- Paul J. Gans

  18. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    marksouth wrote:
    >On Sun, 16 Mar 2008 16:48:54 +0000, Paul J Gans wrote:


    >> marksouth wrote:
    >>>On Sun, 16 Mar 2008 04:02:21 +0000, Paul J Gans wrote:

    >>
    >>>> Let me give you (and them) an example. Say I want to run "ifconfig"
    >>>> to check on something with my network connection. You cannot run that
    >>>> as a normal user because it will not be found by a normal user's
    >>>> search path.

    >>
    >>>/sbin/ifconfig works as a normal user under nearly every distro I've
    >>>ever used :-)

    >>
    >> How did you know it was in /sbin?


    >Dunno for sure. Mostly when I recall a command and the first part
    >doesn't respond to tab completion, I try /sbin next.
    >
    >> No wonder newbies don't stick around here long. Between the insults and
    >> the obfuscated answers they get nowhere.


    >I'm a little offended by this. You seem to be implying that I'm
    >insulting newbies, or providing an obfuscated answer.


    >All I did was point out that a normal user can run ifconfig if they know
    >the path. How that got to accusations of insults and obfuscation is
    >difficult to understand from where I'm sitting.


    I'm sorry if I seemed to be picking on you. I wasn't. The
    OP asked a simple question and, as happens, got crap thrown
    at him as a result.

    That's what sparked this thread. The thread title was somebody's
    response to the OP's question.

    As far as I know the OP has not been back and, if true, isn't
    likely to be back.

    Another victory for openSUSE?

    *That* is what annoys me about all this. I have no problem with
    the regulars ragging each other once in a while. But that's not
    the only reason this group exists.

    --
    --- Paul J. Gans

  19. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    Theo v. Werkhoven wrote:
    >The carbonbased lifeform Paul J Gans inspired alt.os.linux.suse with:
    >> marksouth wrote:
    >>>On Sun, 16 Mar 2008 04:02:21 +0000, Paul J Gans wrote:

    >>
    >>>> Let me give you (and them) an example. Say I want to run "ifconfig" to
    >>>> check on something with my network connection. You cannot run that as a
    >>>> normal user because it will not be found by a normal user's search path.

    >>
    >>>/sbin/ifconfig works as a normal user under nearly every distro I've ever
    >>>used :-)

    >>
    >> How did you know it was in /sbin?
    >>
    >> No wonder newbies don't stick around here long. Between the
    >> insults and the obfuscated answers they get nowhere.


    >Newbies learn by (lots of) reading and going through the OS hierarchie
    >looking for stuff and studying scripts (in) etc.
    >I for one am not prepared to dumb down technically correct answers, just
    >because a newbie doesn't immediatly "get" it. That would be like using
    >baby-talk to a foreigner in your country, to make it "easy" to understand
    >for that person. Nevermind that that foreigner subsequently only knows
    >how to use baby-talk speaking to other people.


    >I expect a newbie to ask a specific question, or go to any of the
    >numerous documentation sites, or to the builtin help system, if he sees
    >something unclear.


    While I don't disagree with you, I don't totally agree either.

    One needs to know a certain minimum in order to ask specific
    questions.

    Some folks learn thata minimum by going off and reading manuals.
    Others just experiment. And some ask questions.

    In this case the person seemed to be using root inappropriately
    and he got basically flammed for it. People new to unixlike
    systems are not aware of the custom of NOT running as root. They
    may have grown up in the Microsoft world where the distinction between
    user and administrator was often not obvious.

    In any event, he deserved a serious answer and an explaination
    as to why running as root is Not Good.

    Yes, I know some folks get tired answering the same questions all the
    time. They should never become teachers.

    --
    --- Paul J. Gans

  20. Re: Dumb question of the week.

    Theo v. Werkhoven wrote:
    > The carbonbased lifeform Paul J Gans inspired alt.os.linux.suse with:
    >> marksouth wrote:
    >>> On Sun, 16 Mar 2008 04:02:21 +0000, Paul J Gans wrote:
    >>>> Let me give you (and them) an example. Say I want to run "ifconfig" to
    >>>> check on something with my network connection. You cannot run that as a
    >>>> normal user because it will not be found by a normal user's search path.
    >>> /sbin/ifconfig works as a normal user under nearly every distro I've ever
    >>> used :-)

    >> How did you know it was in /sbin?
    >>
    >> No wonder newbies don't stick around here long. Between the
    >> insults and the obfuscated answers they get nowhere.

    >
    > Newbies learn by (lots of) reading and going through the OS hierarchie
    > looking for stuff and studying scripts (in) etc.
    > I for one am not prepared to dumb down technically correct answers, just
    > because a newbie doesn't immediatly "get" it. That would be like using
    > baby-talk to a foreigner in your country, to make it "easy" to understand
    > for that person. Nevermind that that foreigner subsequently only knows
    > how to use baby-talk speaking to other people.
    >
    > I expect a newbie to ask a specific question, or go to any of the
    > numerous documentation sites, or to the builtin help system, if he sees
    > something unclear.
    >
    > Theo


    People tend to learn better by mentoring than by sifting through reams
    of documents to find an answer.

    --
    Blattus Slafaly ? 3 7/8

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