I saw in a reddit comment that it was possible to switch to root user in nautilus file browser by just typing in a series of forward slashes and colons. I've since forgotten the sequence and searching the internet did not return any answers.

Is there an actual way to do that?

  • 1
    Hello, I've seen that question and I have read it. What I am asking is if there is a way to switch to root while using nautilus by just using the adressbar
    – prab4th
    Sep 5, 2018 at 15:14
  • what I wanted to do was to gain root priviledges, I've edited the question
    – prab4th
    Sep 5, 2018 at 15:21
  • 1
    There is the nautilus-admin - Nautilus Admin is a simple Python extension for the Nautilus file manager that adds some administrative actions to the right-click menu sudo apt install nautilus-admin
    – oldfred
    Sep 5, 2018 at 16:56

2 Answers 2


You may want to use the GVfs admin backend, just add admin:// to the beginning of the full path to your preferred directory.

Open Nautilus the usual way and press Ctrl+L to enable typing in the address-bar, and then enter for example admin:///usr/ to open the /usr/ directory.

enter image description here

Alternatively, launch Terminal and run

nautilus admin:///

to open the / directory or

nautilus admin:///usr/

to open the /usr/ directory etc.


You can go to the root folder / and double click the folder called root. Then, write your password two times and you'll get into the root folder. Then you can see / at the top of the screen. Click at that and now you are in a root instance of Nautilus.

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