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Re: [vox] linux recommendation [plus win32 rant ;) ]
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Re: [vox] linux recommendation [plus win32 rant ;) ]

On Sun, Mar 04, 2007 at 11:13:22AM -0500, Ruben Safir wrote:
> What happens when you need to bring the machine up in single user mode because 
> a hard drive is causing problems?

Thankfully, I've never had that situation.  Thinking about it, I assume
the Ubuntu folks did something sensible, like allowing a sudo'er user
to provide their password.

A quick Google shows that you will need to set a root password to be able
to go into Single User mode, but like someone else responded, it's probably
a lot safer (if less convenient) to do this off of a rescue CD, rather than
your live system.

  Scroll down to: "Single User Mode without root password for maintenance"

> I'm failing to see how not having a root user is an advantage.

There IS a root user.  It simply does not have a password, by default,
so you cannot "log in" or "su" to it.  For non-tech-saavy people, this is
probably a boon.  In a sense, it forces them to think about what they're
doing, and not do crazy stuff like run their X11 desktop as root all the time.

Simply issue:

  sudo passwd

And now you can login or su.  Like I said, I did this on my headless
Kubuntu print/fileserver, because Ubuntu's default CUPS setup makes it
difficult to configure via HTTP.  (They assume you'll be using the GNOME
or KDE GUI tools to configure CUPS, which I could not physically do.)

Anyway, again, I've gone something like a year with a Kubuntu desktop
and have never needed to "su" to root or log-in as root.

Heck, in fact, most things I do on a day-to-day basis are handled by the
GUI, _anyway_.  If there are updated packages in any of the repositories
in my apt/sources.list, an icon appears in my panel systray.  When I click
it, it asks for my user password (much like Mac OS X does for this kind
of thing), and then brings up Adept Updater.  I click "Fetch Updates,"
wait a minute, then click "Apply Updates" and voila... upgrade.

Slightly off-topic... I'm noticing various disparate ways in which
Windows software providers are trying to handle updates.  Annoyingly,
it seems like everybody does it differently:

  * Windows update - usually the weekly Tuesday security update crap
  * Sun Java - annoying taskbar systray icon bugs me about JRE updates
  * Installsheild - looks like it's trying to be an APT-style update
    repository for 2 different programs on my system
  * [random apps] - Things like Mozilla SeaMonkey and WinAMP often bug me
    that a new version is available, but only when I launch them.
    (Uh, I'm kinda BUSY USING YOU right now, to bother upgrading, damnit!)

Obviously, I much prefer the way Debian, Ubuntu, etc. (and no doubt
Yum-based distro) do it...

Oh, and Linux NEVER tells me: "you need to reboot" "no" [15 mins later]
"you still need to reboot"  "go to hell, i'm working"

or:  "you've plugged in a USB device.  now, even though you've plugged it
in before, you plugged it into a different USB port this time.  let me
spend 5 minutes of your time making you click buttons to install a driver."

"by the way... now you need to reboot"

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