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Old 07-24-2012, 11:51 PM   #1
Registered: Feb 2008
Posts: 74

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How to login as root into Mint 12 - and how to get Skype audio working

Have just installed Mint12 and it does seem to be a 64bit ripper of an OS !! :-)
And it seems to have some "optimising interaction" with the CPU/mboard etc when it installs, judging by the number of assorted files with "amd64" in their titles - which has to be a good thing compared to the rather "one size fits all" approach of older linuxes.
I tried Ubuntu12.04 but just couldn't live with the taskbar across the top of the screen that Unity/Gnome3 has - I much prefer the "old" Gnome2 GUI :-) - as do many others , so it seems!

However I have a few little niggles with Mint12 which hopefully a more technoliterate upline might be able to sort out in a few seconds, if poss:

How can I make it allow a login as root from the login screen - which it refuses to do now?
The trick with Fedora was simply to comment out the 3rd line in /etc/pam.d/gdm-password (= auth required pam_succeed...) but neither that file, or anyhing much like it, seems to be anywhere in that directory in M12. And yes, I have set a root password, and I know how to "su -"/sudo etc, but sometimes (eg running the excellent little bash "bootinfoscript" to sort out booting probs) it's just a lot easier to login as root.

I installed the Skype beta (first try at it on linux) and the webcam's video is working OK - but there's no audio from its microphone. In the Skype setup options it says "Pulse audio" but there doesn't seem to be any way to change that and select the Logitech 905's mike - or ALSA or whatever else. I see I can get rid of the pulseaudio by "apt-get remove pulseaudio" but how do I go about getting the right input after doing that? I have also got a beautiful Asus Xonar soundcard and that seems to be working OK under M12 in Audacity (whose IT architecture makes me cringe somewhat) - with ALSA I think/suppose.

And also: is there some way of getting to automount the other harddrives in the system without having to enter a password every time? This is a little annoying after the "openness"/transparency of Fedora where one can easily read and write to any other hdd without having to put in a password. One of the main gripes I have with M12 so far is that one seems to have to put in a password to get to blow one's nose :-S :-)

Finally how does one translate the GRUB2 entry for M12 back to the GRUB1 format - which I use (and prefer) for my multiOSbooting system? Yes, I know that F8 gets at the other sdd's MBRs but [for neatness - and OCD perhaps :-)] I like having all the OSs booting offof the one GRUB1 screen.

TmuchlyIA uplines!

AMD FX-4100 Black cpu
Asus M5A97 EVO m/b (SATA3
8GB of Kingston 1600 RAM which only seems to want to run at 1333max
Asus Xonar STX s/card
Radeon HD5450 vidcard
Seagate 1TB ST31000524AS (Mint, XP, & ntfs "dump")
90G OCZ Vertex 3 (7 & FC14)
Asstd other whirlygigs and SSDs as needed
Old 07-25-2012, 12:05 AM   #2
Registered: Sep 2005
Location: Rishon Le Ziyyon Israel
Posts: 184

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1. Mounting drives automatically install ntfs configuration tool do it the easy way! Click internal & external drives and reboot.

2. Regarding Skype.
Why in Root? That's not necessary to open Skype, however to store the ALSA settings it may be necessary in the Terminal. Secondly I also dumped Pulse Linux and retain Alsa.

If you have trouble saving your ALSA settings use root to do this. You may have to change permissions for the /var/lib/alsa folder contents selecting your name in Group (gksudo nautilus and password). This will avoid the Terminal coming back with an answer /var/lib/alsa/alsa.settings (gksudo gedit) does not belong to root and then find without root you cannot save the settings with alsactl store and alsactl restore after opening ALSA with alsamixer. I copied a file alsascript to my home folder as well.

You can install QAS mixer a graphical front for ALSA, and you will see all you want to see without using a Terminal. However, you may have to as a precaution use the settings in a terminal: alsactl store and alsactl restore.

Regarding the Rear Mike: I would check whether the rear mike works at all in other programmes. It's a possibility that all your sound card settings are not starting with Linux. For that check around the forums.

Last edited by moshebagelfresser; 07-25-2012 at 12:58 AM. Reason: Adding more explanation
Old 08-09-2012, 11:46 PM   #3
Registered: Feb 2008
Posts: 74

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 3
Well - have solved all those "newbie"-ish problems but before marking it SOLVED I'll say what I did - in case any others have similar probs:

(1)Duh. It was too simple for me - was looking for a trickier solution - as is needed in Fedora. Just had to check the "Allow local system administrator login" box in the Security submenu of the Login Window configuring app. But have just been quite heavily "tickedoff"/"flamed" in a parallel post I made on this question for logging in to a root GUI.
It seems, and I accept this!, that one should always turn off one's internet connection first - otherwise others' servers are open to "attack". Which is why logging in as root is now getting to be made quite difficult, I guess. As one reply said: it's too easy to forget the "wide-open"/compromised nature of one's system when running from a root desktop should one want to look something up on the www!

(2) the Skype sound/recording not working: offof a Mint forum I found that the trick was to just "sudo apt-get remove pulseaudio" which, after dumping PulseAudio, allowed the "normal"/whatIwasexpecting menu of all the other sound devices to come up. Which PulseAudio somehow seemed to blockout/exclude. The Mint forum post also said to install ALSA but the latest version of that was already there of course. So the Skype (linux beta) is apparently working OK in all ways now.

(3) the ntfs config tool automounts all the winDoze drives at bootup as the answerer to my original question said. Another . Interestingly though, one can't seem to "Paste" things into any OS drive/partition - only into storage/"dump" drives/partitions.

(4)As to trying to stick to GRUB1 - after using the "update GRUB" command on GRUB2 - it found all the various OSs and even picked up a USB stick I use for MBR backingup (with FreeDOS) - I think I might be getting "converted" to GRUB2 - in spite of all the "Do not edit" stuff, it seems one can do a limited amount of editing to it.


8G RAM working at 1600 now - a little manual BIOS tweaking = AOK now

Last edited by PaulFC5; 08-13-2012 at 04:58 PM. Reason: Learned more about the dangers of this practice!
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