A good Windows replacement
Posted Oct 18, 2003 1:11 UTC (Sat) by gleef
In reply to: A good Windows replacement
Parent article: A Review of LindowsOS 4.0
Corel ... removed the run-as-root behaviour in response
to criticism. Nowadays there isn't even much need for that, since KDE has an option to login one selected user automatically.
As long as it's not root, as long as the automatic user has limited authority to install software and run kernel code, it's a vast improvement. In fact, that might make a good compromise:
Have two userids: root and desktop. The desktop user has no password, is automatically logged in at boot-time. The root user is required to have a password, but is never actually logged in unless by a power user who knows how to use a command line. Have the installation program, and key configuration programs placed in a wrapper that pops up a dialog box which:
- Identifies the task to be performed (eg. install Mozilla 1.7)
- Asks for the administration password
- Offers a friendly "Cancel" button if you don't want the task to happen
- Offers a friendly "Help" button if the person is confused and wants more information
It's not a perfect solution, and I'd never do that to my machine, but I think it would appeal to the same users who want to not worry about such things, and keep their machines happier for longer. You could even offer a method to disable it (with an explanation of why not to) for the users who won't even accept that solution.
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