Adding /sbin and /usr/sbin to everyone's path in F10

Behdad Esfahbod behdad at
Wed Apr 23 17:22:37 UTC 2008

On Wed, 2008-04-23 at 11:30 -0400, Tom "spot" Callaway wrote:
> I propose that we add /sbin and /usr/sbin to the path for normal users
> (as well as root) for F10? There are plenty of useful tools in there for
> non-root users (ifconfig, fdisk, parted), and IMHO, any tool which
> assumes the user is root because it lives in /sbin is fundamentally
> broken. The LSB doesn't mandate this (at least, not anywhere I can see),
> so I propose that we just do it.
> Anyone opposed to such an action?

The tools in /sbin are divided into two categories:

  a) Those that are useful for non-root users, mostly in a
query/reporting capacity.  Like ifconfig, lsmod, and fdisk (for -l),
lspci, lsusb, ...

  b) Those that are not useful without root privileges.   Like modprobe,
rmmod, insmod, fsck, swapoff, ...

There are 3 ways to handle this issue:

  1) All of a) and b) in /sbin, and /sbin not in users' path.  This is
the current setting.

  2) All of a) and b) in /sbin, and /sbin in users' path.  This is what
you propose.

  3) Symlink all of a) into /bin (or symlink), but keep b) in /sbin and
keep /sbin out of users' path.

In an ideal world, we would have 3.  But it's a lot of packaging work.
Failing that, there's near consensus that 2) is better than 1) as the
set of commands in group a) seems to be larger than b).

> ~spot

"Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little
 Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety."
        -- Benjamin Franklin, 1759

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