I have a weird issue going on. I have a user account and I can login to Gnome normally. From a terminal there I can use su root and switch to root with my root password. However, when I try to login to Gnome as root, the same password does not work.

I'm using Fedora 13 on a Dell Inspiron 6400

  • Be aware that root-gui-login is off for your own protection. Very little GUI software is written with the idea of running with root privs in mind. If you know what you're doing, go for it, but better to log in as yourself. (Even, I think, for people who know what they're doing.) – mattdm Mar 4 '11 at 15:45

You're not allowed to log in to the desktop as root by default.

See Enabling Root User for GNOME Display Manager, which says:

  1. Log in as a regular user and open a terminal and run
    su -c 'gedit /etc/pam.d/gdm-password'
  2. Change
    auth required pam_succeed_if.so user != root quiet to
    # auth required pam_succeed_if.so user != root quiet
  3. Save the file

See also GDM Root Login.

  • It's said that the same change should be applied to "gdm-password", for Fedora 13. – tshepang Mar 4 '11 at 7:55
  • Yes, it's said on the page I linked to at the bottom: "On Fedora 11 onwards, you also need to edit /etc/pam.d/gdm-password, following the above steps.". I changed the main instructions from /etc/pam.d/gdm to /etc/pam.d/gdm-password based on that. – Mikel Mar 4 '11 at 8:49
  • Oh, I mixed them. Why didn't you mention the need to edit "gdm" as well? – tshepang Mar 4 '11 at 9:24
  • According to Fedora documentation, the file is called gdm in Fedora 10, and gdm-password in Fedora 11 and above. It sounded like there was no /etc/pam.d/gdm on Fedora 13 based on that. – Mikel Mar 4 '11 at 9:26
  • You must have missed the word also in that page. – tshepang Mar 4 '11 at 10:06

I haven't tried this myself, but I found it here.

  1. Comment out this line auth required pam_succeed_if.so user != root quiet from "/etc/pam.d/gdm".
  2. Comment out the same line from "/etc/pam.d/gdm-password".

After that, log out and log in as root and see if it works.

NOTE: It's isn't automatic because it's not recommended to log in as root.

  • @Mikel +1 to you for linking to a more authoritative resource. – tshepang Mar 4 '11 at 9:23

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