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ThorsHammer1111 08-24-2003 08:25 PM

Need to be root to view system messages?
I'm trying to set up a Eterm window on my desktop to view system messages (written to /var/log/messages) and it appears that I need to be root to do this... However, I've seen screenshots where it appears that this can be done without being root...

Ideally, I'm trying to create a transparent, borderless window to display system messages, but I can figure out how to do this without being root???

Any ideas???


MasterC 08-24-2003 08:36 PM

You have a few options...

First off, a borderless terminal is a bit much for simply viewing messages, head over to and search for root-tail or variations of that, it's likely going to be more along the lines of what you want.

Second: You will need to give your user read permissions on that file, OR add a special group that can read that file, then add your user to that group ( a bit more secure ). If you wish to be secure, reply back and I'll go a bit more in depth on how to accomplish that. Otherwise, use the chmod (man chmod) command to give READ permissions to everyone on that file:
chmod 744 /var/log/messages



ThorsHammer1111 08-24-2003 08:48 PM

Thanks MasterC !!

I will investigate each of your suggestions. However, would you know if I'd still have to be root using the root-tail program you mentioned?

Thanks again

MasterC 08-24-2003 08:50 PM

Well root-tail simply displays certain files, so you'll still need read permissions, one way or another, on whatever file you want to display.


ThorsHammer1111 08-24-2003 09:12 PM

Thanks for the help. I'm using root-tail and it is exactly what I was looking for.

MasterC 08-24-2003 10:51 PM

You're welcome, glad you got it all sussed out :)


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