ntdll: add a warning about running wine as root (resend)

James Mckenzie jjmckenzie51 at earthlink.net
Mon Feb 9 08:35:20 CST 2009

Alexandre Julliard <julliard at winehq.org> wrote:
>Sent: Feb 9, 2009 7:26 AM
>To: James Mckenzie <jjmckenzie51 at earthlink.net>
>Cc: Austin English <austinenglish at gmail.com>, wine-devel at winehq.org
>Subject: Re: ntdll: add a warning about running wine as root (resend)
>James Mckenzie <jjmckenzie51 at earthlink.net> writes:
>> Second, the problem is that newbies, figuring that their favorite
>> program will not run as an ordinary user, gets a wiff that root has
>> more privileges, will attempt run as root totally hosing their Wine
>> directory.  This then starts the 'you should not run Wine as root'
>> mantra on Wine-Users.  This then causes the newbie to question why did
>> I go to Linux/Wine when I had a perfectly running Windows system?
>Please explain how running as root will screw their Wine directory. If
>that's really true, surely it should be fixed instead of simply throwing
>out a warning and proceeding.

New wine installation:

su (no dash so root's environment is not picked up)
wine notepad
install various programs and use them.

User logs in a second time after learning how to properly use Wine.
Attempt to do anything with Wine in user space.  Cannot do due to permissions problems.

The solution:

sudo rm -rf .wine

User now upset because everything they did is gone.

Yes, there are legit reasons to run as root, one of them is the now famous ICMP 'Ping' unavailability issue in Linux.  Experts know about this and how to work around it.  Newbies, used to Windows and how it works, just figure that this is restricted to administrators, and switch to root to get around it.  The proper command, as I have learned through years of UNIX administration, is 'su -' but newbies don't know this and most just use 'su'.

Thus, the need for the warning.  Experts tend to know what they are doing, newbies don't for the most part.  And yes, I borked many a system as a newbie and as an expert (building kernels for RedHat/Fedora for my Thinkpad.

James McKenzie

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