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How can I elevate nautilus privileges to move or copy a folder as root?

I want to have full rights in Ubuntu 11.10 so I don't have to use the terminal every time I want to copy and paste or edit a file that is owned by root. Is there a way to do this?

I changed my user role to Administrator and it does not appear to have changed anything.

Is there a way, like MS Windows to simply copy/paste or edit files folders with momentary privileges to perform the task without the requirement to do it through terminal?

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migrated from Jun 13 '12 at 22:54

This question came from our site for professional and enthusiast programmers.

marked as duplicate by Jorge Castro, Eliah Kagan, James Jun 14 '12 at 1:20

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

If all you want to do is to allow file manipulations as root, but avoiding the command line, then you can launch nautilus as root. Alt+F2 followed by gksudo nautilus will prompt you for a password, and then launch the file manager.

You could create a launcher for this (disclaimer: I haven't tried the methods on that page).

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Better might be gksudo gedit since a text editor is quite a bit simpler than a file manager, and is less likely to do dangerous things as root. (From within nautilus, for example, you might easily accidentally try to delete /usr.) – cdhowie Jun 13 '12 at 21:39
A file manager is not innately more dangerous than a command line. rm -rf / home/bar/my_dir being the classic. I wonder if nautilus puts /usr into the recycle bin :) Still, I don't see much alternative if the OP wants to do all the file manipulations in a gui with root privileges. – Henry Gomersall Jun 13 '12 at 21:43
True, though I can see accidentally striking the delete key as being a bit more common. But that's probably a matter of opinion. In any case, gedit shouldn't be able to recursively delete directories, so it's probably a bit safer than both other options. :) – cdhowie Jun 13 '12 at 21:47
gedit can't do any file manipulations (beyond creating and editing) - and rightly so, it's a text editor! – Henry Gomersall Jun 13 '12 at 21:49
Indeed. I was not posting the comment to say your answer was wrong, only that using gedit instead is an alternative approach that may be useful as well. – cdhowie Jun 13 '12 at 21:50