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Old 08-12-2006, 03:40 AM   #1
Registered: Nov 2002
Location: /au/qld/bne/4157
Distribution: Gentoo mactel-linux
Posts: 238

Rep: Reputation: 30
su root permission denied

Rather then exhuming this thread from 2004!!

I thought I might ask this since I have not had it happen to me before and google was not much help.

When I
su: Permission denied
this is a new install and I can sudo su but not su directly

the other thread said I had to be in the wheel group but since this is deprecated I made myself a member of root to no avail...


Old 08-12-2006, 03:48 AM   #2
Registered: Aug 2006
Posts: 51

Rep: Reputation: 15
i'm not sure but i think there is a file called /etc/security/console.perms (or something like that) that limits who's allowed to su to root.

le: also check out /etc/pam.d/su.
Old 08-12-2006, 10:06 AM   #3
Registered: Oct 2005
Location: Hannover, Germany
Distribution: Let there be Ubuntu... :o)
Posts: 573

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this is a new install
Of what Linux distribution?
Old 08-12-2006, 11:15 AM   #4
Registered: Dec 2004
Posts: 125

Rep: Reputation: 15
Did you ever set a root password? do sudo su then passwd and change the password and try again.
Old 08-12-2006, 08:42 PM   #5
Registered: Nov 2002
Location: /au/qld/bne/4157
Distribution: Gentoo mactel-linux
Posts: 238

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 30
OK, thanks for all that. The distro is Gentoo and has never happened before for me with Gentoo installs - something subtle I have done differently this time.

I am able to login as root so I do know the passwd.

I will investigate the above suggestions

Old 08-20-2006, 02:20 PM   #6
LQ Newbie
Registered: Aug 2006
Location: Eastern Maine
Distribution: Gentoo
Posts: 1

Rep: Reputation: 0
Yeah me too! I followed the same path as you too: Make the user a member of root by executing 'usermod -G root (username)'. I was thinking that root must be the wheel group... But no - this didn't work.

Finally I dug into the gentoo handbook and found in chapter 11 a listing for useradd that used the option '-G users,wheel,audio'. Aha! There it is: The wheel group is named "wheel" (duh!! How come it took me 2 hours to figure that out). So just execute 'usermod -G wheel username'. This Gentoo is a lot of work, but I like it 'cause it really is a learning experience. Don.
Old 08-20-2006, 08:24 PM   #7
Registered: Nov 2002
Location: /au/qld/bne/4157
Distribution: Gentoo mactel-linux
Posts: 238

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 30
yep, that's where I ended up too.

Its a case of not seeing what's right there in front of me - recently the wheel became deprecated in Debian and I simply never thought to look there - once I added user to the group all was well...

Live and learn and learn again
Thanks for your reply


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