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I've rooted my Palm Pre (WebOS 1.4.5) and installed a SSH server on it. Now I'd like to SSH into it with an unprivileged user and use sudo for elevated commands.

However: There is no sudo on the system. Can I add it somehow?

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why not just use su -c 'command'? – xenoterracide Nov 7 '10 at 19:57
@xenoterracide: Because I have literally no idea about Linux. ;-) This is is a busybox based system, BTW. su tells me "su: must be suid to work properly". – Tomalak Nov 7 '10 at 20:26
@tolomak, yeah it would have to be suid... do you have root access? can you chmod it? – xenoterracide Nov 7 '10 at 23:26
@xenoterracide, sure I can. I did a chmod 4755 /bin/su and su works now, thanks. :) I also found a way to install sudo itself, took me a while to get it right. – Tomalak Nov 8 '10 at 8:50
up vote 5 down vote accepted

I found the way to do it (was rather easy after all):

  • prerequisite: Preware is installed (done this already)
  • install ipkg-opt (called the "Optware Advanced Linux Command Line Installer" in Preware)
  • connect to your device command line as root (via novaterm/USB cable or SSH, if already installed)
  • call ipkg-opt update
  • call ipkg-opt list | grep sudo to make sure the package is available
  • call ipkg-opt install sudo

At which point my device did:

palm-webos-device ipkg # ipkg-opt install sudo
Installing sudo ( to root...
Downloading http://ipkg.nslu2-linux.org/feeds/optware/cs08q1armel/cross/unstable/sudo_1.7.4.4-1_arm.ipk
Configuring sudo
Successfully terminated.

I assume an unpriviledged user has already been added to the system. Now modify /opt/etc/sudoers:

  • chmod 640 /opt/etc/sudoers (make writable for root)
  • add permission for that user to the file (username ALL=(ALL) ALL)
  • chmod 440 /opt/etc/sudoers (make readlony again)

Now SSHing into the device as the unprivileged user and using sudo from there should work.

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