gksudo: Or how this old dog learned new tricks :-)

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Okay if you know about gksudo, fine. I just found out about it a little while back when I was trying to run ethereal. You see under Ubuntu (and a lot of other Linux distros) the concept of root user has been removed. There is no root (well there is, but you can’t access it), unless you specifically modify your system to activate it. That’s fine (most of the time), since you can use sudo to accomplish almost anything as the administrator. One thing that doesn’t work properly are the graphical applications that need root access. So here is where gksudo comes to rescue. In the case of ethereal I would issue the following command to get it to prompt me for sudo and run as root user:
gksudo ethereal
So next time you get tempted to open up that root account on your Ubuntu install, don’t, use gksudo and get those gui apps running as root.

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