Doing administration tasks without administrative privileges.

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1
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1answer
100 views

temporarily disabling one's own filesystem write permission

I can't believe there is no simple solution to this (because it seems potentially a very useful feature to me), but so far I couldn't find any. I'd like to be able to (temporarily) turn off my own ...
2
votes
1answer
150 views

login 'authentication failure' by non-root user, can login only by root [closed]

In my CentOS 6.0 system, working since months, suddenly stop authenticating non-root users, in graphical mode. I have checked necessary /etc/pam.d/* files, but those are unchanged. SELinux is ...
3
votes
1answer
695 views

Installing Chrome on 64bit Gentoo without Superuser Access

For a bit of background, I am trying to install Chrome (or Chromium) on to a gentoo user account at my university. We are allowed to install software as we like, however we lack superuser access ...
1
vote
2answers
3k views

Running tomcat under tomcat service account in CentOS

I'm installing tomcat on a CentOS box for use as an application server. My system admin created a tomcat user service account under which to run tomcat. I'm generally following instructions on this ...
1
vote
0answers
36 views

How can I hide a command line from (e.g.) top & htop? [duplicate]

I know that both support specifying the username, which can be forced using an alias in root-owned ~/.bashrc, but one can temporarily disable the alias by prepending the command with \, so what are ...
2
votes
2answers
59 views

Let users create their own daemons

How do I let server's users create their own daemons? They should auto-start on boot and otherwise behave just like regular daemons but with lower privileges overall. I remember I saw a tool that ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Encrypting loopback images without using a loopback device

I'm trying to design a firmware update system for an embedded Linux system. My plan is to send an image that can be mounted on the target system, so I don't need to unpack the entire file. I also want ...
0
votes
0answers
23 views

User made host aliases [duplicate]

I would like to set up aliases for hosts /etc/hosts style, but I don't have root privileges. Would I be able to set these up from within my /home directory? How?
2
votes
2answers
2k views

How to change the user timezone?

I know that (for example in Debian) one could use dpkg-reconfigure tzdata to change the timezone of the system but I am wondering how one could change the user timezone (if Linux/Unix supports such an ...
1
vote
1answer
114 views

Debian, nonroot, cron, bash script and rebooting at specific time

As nonroot user, how can I schedule a reboot every day at 4:30am? 30 04 * * * /home/user/scripts/reboot.sh As a nonroot normal user, I'm sure the system won't allow me to use the reboot command. ...
2
votes
2answers
711 views

How can a normal user trigger a root cron task to execute immediately, without delay?

I have a root cron task that runs every day. But I want to allow normal users to request that it run immediately, if they so wish. It is a harmless process and it can run as often as needed and these ...
1
vote
1answer
113 views

Permission of DVD device file not being retained when machine is rebooted

I am using Linux Fedora 4 and would like a non-root user to be able to write to DVDs using the DVD drive. I was able to do this by adding write access to the group of the device file /dev/scd0 and ...
6
votes
4answers
326 views

Listing all devices as non-superuser

I'm trying to mount external hard drive. As I know, to mount manually, I should use fdisk -l to determine which device refers to the drive. When I'm doing so without sudo I have next output: ...
1
vote
1answer
187 views

Hidding an encrypted folder in a shared system without root access (unshare -m)

I'm a graduate student trying to use a cluster at my university. These machines are shared, so I want to protect the source code I use (I signed a NDA, so I'm scared about publishing the code by ...
53
votes
6answers
19k views

Can I create a user-specific hosts file to complement /etc/hosts?

Is it possible to add a list of hosts that are only specific to a certain user? Perhaps a user-specific hosts file? This mechanism should also complement the entries in the /etc/hosts file.
6
votes
2answers
436 views

How can I allow a user to prioritize a process to negative niceness?

I want a user to run a specific process on the system with a negative nice value. I can't simply fork the process to background as this specific program is a minecraft server and I rely on the command ...
1
vote
1answer
89 views

Is it possbile to mount Windows filesystems without using the root account?

As we all know, the intervention of root is necessary to mount a filesystem on Linux. But is it possible to do this without access to the root account? Because I don't know the password of root.
1
vote
0answers
70 views

can't access account with empty password

I used the passwd command to remove the password for my account. Now, when I try to use su to log in to my account, it won't let me enter an empty password. So now, I can't access my account. Any ...
4
votes
2answers
437 views

Installing gcc without root?

I'm running OSX, and I don't have root, or an existing compiler. Is there any way I can install gcc? Are there official or trusted unofficial mach-o binaries that can be downloaded for a certain ...
8
votes
4answers
7k views

Allow non-superusers to mount any filesystem

Is it possible to allow some particular users (e.g. members of a group) to mount any filesystem without superuser privileges on Linux? (Another question might have been "in what ways a user can harm ...
2
votes
1answer
171 views

Install newer unix sort command without root permission

The unix server I am using has an old version of sort installed (no -V option), would it be possible to install a newer version locally (I do not have root permissions)? Where would I download it and ...
2
votes
1answer
92 views

Is there a mechanism to run a “service” by a non-root user? [duplicate]

Is there a way I can have a continuously running, background process that can be controlled by me (a regular, non-root user)? All I need to be able to do is start, stop and restart the process. ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

gvim on RHEL (Red Hat Enterprise Linux) install in home directory

How to install gvim on a RHEL server that doesn't have it (for use with SSH with X11 forwarding*)? No sudo access is available, so it has to be in the user's home directory. *Getting all the ...
12
votes
1answer
12k views

Installing Chrome on Linux without needing to be root

How can I install Chrome on Linux without needing to log in as root? Note that I want to use Chrome, not Chromium. If I go to the official download page, I get the choice between: Please select ...
2
votes
1answer
204 views

How do I get tcpsvd to drop its root privileges?

Assume a script runs on boot as root. From this script I want to start tcpsvd -E 0 515 lpd. I want tcpsvd to run as an unprivileged user. But it requires root privileges to bind to the port 515. How ...
2
votes
3answers
3k views

Allow a user to view the home directory of other users via sudo

I am new to system administration. We have a lab set up where we have a server and client machines. The client machines have LDAP users which has the work area for all the users in the centralized ...
2
votes
1answer
275 views

Resetting USB device without root permissions

I'm getting a strange behavior on an Android system when quickly plugging and unplugging usb devices from a usb hub. What happens is that after some quick plug/unplug of a device on the hub, I start ...
4
votes
1answer
213 views

Change owner of own directory

I am fully aware that a non-root user cannot change the owner of a folder to another user even if the user owns it unless they use sudo or have the CAP_CHOWN capability. Is there a way to grant a ...
3
votes
2answers
145 views

Securely allowing users to create accounts

1) I'm struggling to find a secure way to allow new users to create accounts without granting them admin rights to do so. If you already have an account on my system and can work UNIX command line, ...
1
vote
0answers
230 views

linking problems when installing python module and dependencies as non-root

I want to install a certain (non-public, numerical) python module on a remote (Debian squeeze) system on which I do not have root (or sudo) privileges. As the python-dev package was not installed, I ...
0
votes
2answers
5k views

Avoid asking password if `su -m user command` is used under `user`?

If I run the script containing su -m user service userservice start under root user, I do not need to enter the password. But when I run it under user user, it asks passwords all the time. That really ...
7
votes
1answer
720 views

How to autostart a background program by a non-root user?

As a non-root user, I want to run a background job when the system boots. It's sort of a service which doesn't require root privilege. Is there a way to do it? One way is to put sudo -u user command ...
2
votes
1answer
279 views

How should I go about setting up vim-pathogen plug-ins for a group as a user with no root permissions?

I do not have root permission on a linux cluster, but I would like to share my vim-plugins to all other members of a linux group using vim-pathogen. We have a group-accessible folder, so that's where ...
1
vote
2answers
42 views

Running script on system start as given user

I have a small script on a dev/staging server that runs services inside tmux. The script just creates a few sessions with a few windows each in which various services are running. How can I make ...
-3
votes
1answer
162 views

Break write permission for non root user?

Can non root user edit files he/she doesn't have access to or create new a file in a directory he/she doesn't own? Is there a way to do that? P.S : I know if root user or file owner gives him write ...
1
vote
1answer
108 views

Virtual Python installation not allowing ez_setup?

I don't have root on my system, so I'm trying to create a virtual Python installation. I ran virtual-python.py, and it told me to run ez_setup.py. I found it online and ran it with the command ...
5
votes
4answers
522 views

Can I have my own version control system?

In the linux/unix machine I am using, I am just a normal user. However, I want a version control system to manage my files to prevent accidental delete/rename/lost/modification. Obviously I don't have ...
19
votes
6answers
10k views

Can I create override dns similar to writing in /etc/hosts without root access

I want to set a dns record that my browser will use, but I don't have root access, so I can't modify /etc/hosts. I need to do this for testing vhosts with apache, whose dns hasn't yet been set up. I ...
22
votes
3answers
14k views

Why can't a normal user `chown` a file?

Why is the chown command root-only? Why can't non-root users use chown to give away files they own?
1
vote
1answer
266 views

LAMP Server setup for personal development

I am setting up a LAMP server in VirtualBox for personal development. This will be an Ubuntu Server 12.04 install, and I will be using Virtual Hosts for Drupal, Yii, and other small PHP apps. Ideally ...
8
votes
2answers
3k views

Installing a package locally to a user - best practices?

I want to install Git locally to a user on a RHEL server (I don't have root access) What would be your cleanest/ most organized way of installing software to a local user account? Installing ...
3
votes
2answers
86 views

How can a user restrict their own group rights without being root?

How can I change my user rights from rwx to r-x at the group level? I'm trying to ensure that I cannot touch any data belonging to other users when I am developing and debugging my scripts. Once I've ...
2
votes
1answer
895 views

How to achieve the effect of chroot in userspace in Linux (without being root)?

The goal is to install and run programs in a displaced (relocated) distro (whose / must not coincide with the global /) inside a host Linux system. The programs are not adapted for using a different / ...
2
votes
1answer
226 views

How to set up a script to run as root non-interactively?

I need to set up the following script to run as root whenever I log in: #!/bin/zsh truncate -s 0 ~yourstruly/.juniper_networks/network_connect/ncsvc.log I know how to run the script as root ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

Redhat: non-root user needs to copy files to a NFS share

Typically non-root users cannot mount directories. Running Redhat Have 6GB tar.gz (/dir/somefile.tar.gz) Need to move to a NFS share on another box (//somebox/somefolder/) We have no other access. ...
4
votes
3answers
488 views

Where are userspace programs supposed to save their logs?

I am writing a script that I want to run without privileges. I want the errors that the script encounters to be logged to some log file. I do not not have privileges to write one to /var/log. And I do ...
6
votes
1answer
5k views

How can I make this daemon/init run as a non root user?

I have an init script to kick off a daemon. The problem is it runs as root. I would like it to run as a user called "deploy". Ubuntu 12.04 #! /bin/sh # File: /etc/init.d/unicorn ### BEGIN INIT ...
0
votes
1answer
357 views

Single-user binary installation location?

I'd like to install a binary for only my user, because I don't have root, and therefore don't have access to /usr/bin. I've tried ~/bin, and it can't find the binary. I'm on Mac OS 10.6.7. Is there ...
2
votes
1answer
59 views

How might I detect memory errors if I do not have root or physical access to a Linux system?

The background to my question is as follows. I currently rent a virtual private server from a major hosting company, which I use to run a minecraft server. I have a suspicion that there may be bad ...
3
votes
1answer
862 views

update-alternatives just for one user

I'm using a shared server. On that server different versions of Java are installed: Selection Path Priority Status ...