Fast user switching is buggy! Try this...

Discussion in 'Mac OS X 10.3 (Panther) Discussion' started by illumin8, Nov 26, 2003.

  1. illumin8 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2003
    Location:
    East Coast, US
    #1
    I was trying to enable my root user account and I ran into a problem. It doesn't work in Panther. FYI, this is a clean install and I'm running 10.3.1. This is what happened:

    1. Loaded Netinfo Manager
    2. Click on Security|Enable Root User
    3. Put in my password, and added a password for the root account.
    4. Clicked on my name in the upper right corner and chose "Login Window..."
    5. Fast User Switching takes me to the login window.
    6. There is now an option called "Other User", I chose this and logged in as root.
    7. Use fast user switching to switch back to my main account.

    Now all of a sudden I can't switch back to root! It has disappeared from both the fast user switching menu and the Login window. But the root user is still logged in somewhere because if I try to restart the computer it warns me that there are other users logged on. I had to restart just to logout the root user.

    Now, the "Other User" option doesn't appear on my login menu at all, and if I go back into Netinfo manager and try to enable the root user again, it still doesn't show up. Any help on this?

    I actually would like to disable the root user account after I'm done using it (no sense in leaving it enabled), does anyone know how to do this also?

    Thanks in advance for your help.
     
  2. jxyama macrumors 68040

    jxyama

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2003
    #2
    to disable, just go back to netinfo manager and do the reverse of what you did to enable root...

    i imagine it's not a bug but some kind of special treatment to protect the root account?

    not sure though, i haven't messed with the root account since upgrading to panther.
     
  3. illumin8 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2003
    Location:
    East Coast, US
    #3
    When I go back to Netinfo manager, the Security menu only has the option to Enable Root, not disable it.

    BTW, I've repaired permissions and this didn't help.
     
  4. mattf macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2003
    Location:
    Central Oregon
    #4
    Don't mean to sound silly, but why are you using root? http://forums.macrumors.com/images/smilies/confused.gif It's much more *secure* to use the sudo command found in the terminal. This will allow you to temporarily execute operations without risking even bigger security problems.
     
  5. maradong macrumors 65816

    maradong

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2003
    Location:
    Luxembourg
    #5
    I experienced that as well :(
    what is really strange however is that I got into some groups normaly even administrator accounts aren't in.
    Just try it typing groups in terminal...
    the command should give you staff and admin or something in that kind out. _not_ more. except if you gave you some more groups manualy.
     
  6. visor macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2003
    Location:
    in bed
    #6
    no problems with that

    OK, I made an upgrade from 10.2.8 with enabled root.

    I don't have a user icon login window, but a simple username/PW window.

    I login as me, do an other user switching, get the login window, login as root, great.

    Now to switch back, i can just choose me in the pulldown menu.

    to switch to root again, i have to use other users, login as root / get the currently running root session.
     
  7. simX macrumors 6502a

    simX

    Joined:
    May 28, 2002
    Location:
    Bay Area, CA
    #7
    Um, Fast User Switching isn't "buggy" because it hides the root user in the switching menu. It SHOULD do that, because you should NEVER enable root and login as root.

    If you want to do anything which requires root privs, you should perform whatever you want to do in your own Finder, and the Finder will automaticalyl ask you to authenticate before performing those actions. This is much safer and much more secure.

    I repeat: never, ever, EVER enable the root user. There's NEVER a need to do so, especially in Panther.
     
  8. saabmp3 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2002
    Location:
    Tacoma, WA
    #8
    Haha, never use root. I agree, it should rarely be used, but you're taking it a bit far.

    BEN
     
  9. illumin8 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2003
    Location:
    East Coast, US
    #9
    Sure, I'm fully aware of how to use the sudo command, but I was going through the hassle recently of trying to install Palm Desktop on Panther, and due to their messed up installer and permissions not being set properly (executable on some portions of the installer), Palm recommended that I do a complete uninstall, and had a bunch of commands that should be executed as root. Normally I would have done these with sudo, but I wanted to make sure I followed the directions exactly.

    But that still doesn't explain why I can't enable root any more.
     
  10. illumin8 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2003
    Location:
    East Coast, US
    #10
    Re: no problems with that

    Yeah, my problem is that the "Other Users" icon disappears from the Login window so it's now impossible to get another root session.
     
  11. illumin8 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2003
    Location:
    East Coast, US
    #11
    I appreciate the response, however, that's a pretty pathetic explanation for a bug.

    That's like saying "I know your Windows computer crashes every time you click the Start Button, just don't press the start button."

    So, is this a bug (I think it is). I wonder if Apple will fix it.
     
  12. illumin8 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2003
    Location:
    East Coast, US
    #12
    I want to report this... how?

    How do I report a bug to Apple (other than calling their 800 number and bitching about it)?

    I'd like to report this through the web if possible.

    Thanks.
     
  13. rooster13 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2004
    Location:
    UK
    #13
    Hi Illumin8,

    Did you get a response from Apple on this? Have the same problem having used root to install macromedia contribute - following macromedia website recommendation as it wouldn't install from admin account.

    Also Netinfo manager now shows 'Enable root user' (rather than 'Disable') option, implying root is disactive; but root can still be logged into via login screen (with username + password entry view option). If you do this and then switch to a normal user, then launch Netinfo manager, then the system hangs necessitating a restart...
     
  14. bankshot macrumors 65816

    bankshot

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2003
    Location:
    Southern California
    #14
    Re: Re: no problems with that

    Not impossible! :D

    At the login window, use the up or down arrow key to highlight one of the user icons. Then hit Option-Return. Voila! Type in any username you want.
     
  15. bankshot macrumors 65816

    bankshot

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2003
    Location:
    Southern California
    #15
    Re: I want to report this... how?

    http://bugreport.apple.com/

    I think their customer service feedback and the OS X feedback pages at the main site probably go through a lot of filters before getting to any software people at Apple. I always feel like those are futile because my suggestions will probably be tossed and ignored anyway (or the people screening them may not understand the problem). But the above goes directly to the developers. Much better, but only as long as it isn't abused by people not reporting real bugs! :p
     
  16. achmafooma macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2002
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #16
    Re: Fast user switching is buggy! Try this...

    Hey, I just had this problem and worked out a solution.

    I brought up NetInfo manager on the computer with the problem, and on another Mac that was working correctly. I went into Users=>root on both.

    On the afflicted computer, I deleted several properties that did not exist on the computer that was working correctly (I don't know what they were, but it was any property that wasn't listed on the working system). I also deleted the "passwd" property.

    After deleting these, lo and behold, the menu option turned back into "Disable Root User" instead of "Enable Root User."

    I disabled it, and then I re-enabled it. This time it said there was no password and asked me to set it. I did.

    After doing these things, the "other" option reappears and things work normally again.

    Hope this helps... email or PM me if you have any questions.
     
  17. qwerty007 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2003
    #17
    Re: Re: no problems with that





    This problem happened on my girlfriends computer. One day the Other... was listed on the login screen along with the admin account and the next day it wasn't. So if you wanna log back as root go into into accounts in the system prefs click on login options then choose "display login window as" name and password. the login screen will not ask you for your user name and password instead of selecting it from a list. so you can type in either your admin account and log in with that or type in root and log in that way. Sorry i can't help you get the Other... back. this was just a quick fix that i had.
     

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