23

This always shows up a few minutes after I log in:

screenshot

I have no idea what it is. If I click Report problem, it asks for my password:

screenshot

This is exactly what I would do if I wanted to steal someone's password.

Why should I trust it, and what is it going to do next if I comply?

6
  • possibly duplicate of : askubuntu.com/questions/43103/…
    – Eray
    Jun 8, 2011 at 16:57
  • 2
    Good question, it can be abused for Social Engineering. Shouldn't the executed command be visible in that dialog?
    – Lekensteyn
    Jun 8, 2011 at 17:03
  • @Lekensteyn: gksu has an option to replace the command with more user-friendly text, which is a clear social engineering risk.
    – Flimm
    Jun 8, 2011 at 18:34
  • 2
    I have a sneaking suspicion that you're asking this because you're curious, not because you're really that worried about your password... it allows the bug reporting system apport reach your system logs to report a bug.
    – jrg
    Jun 8, 2011 at 18:39
  • 1

2 Answers 2

12

You're absolutely right, there is a possibility that this is some other software masquerading as Apport (the bug reporting software).

I wouldn't worry about it though, as this is the expected behaviour of Apport. If you have it enabled and a program crashes, a window similar to this will appear. Sometimes Apport needs to run as root to gather system information and send it to Launchpad.

If you don't want to run this risk, just disable Apport.

If you do decide to trust this prompt, you'll be able to inspect the report and find out which program is crashing on login.

To disable Apport:

  1. Press Alt + F2
  2. Type gksu gedit /etc/default/apport and press Enter.
  3. Replace the line enabled=1 with enabled=0.
  4. Save and exit. You might have to reboot for the setting to come into effect.
3
  • 2
    Oh, this is Apport? I trust that program. I have now filed a bug requesting that Apport identify itself before requesting privilege elevation.
    – ændrük
    Jun 8, 2011 at 21:29
  • funny thing is, I don't even have an apport process in the system monitor when this window pops up.
    – Christoph
    Jun 5, 2012 at 14:53
  • @Christoph: On my Ubuntu 17.04, while the password dialog is displayed ps -e |grep apport includes /usr/bin/pkexec /usr/share/apport/apport-gtk Jul 14, 2017 at 12:22
2

On terminal :

sudo rm /var/crash/*

this will delete old crash files. And then restart your computer. If still you see this dialog try these :

apt-get update
apt-get upgrade

(these are upgrade your packages with fresh ones) and restart.

4
  • 1
    Why are you telling me to delete my crash reports? This doesn't answer my question at all.
    – ændrük
    Jun 8, 2011 at 16:52
  • 1
    Your are saying "i'm getting this error" . Maybe that happened after an installation / compilation process . If you can't solve your problem after reading crash reports you can delete them and then try again. Or basically, you can skip this step and update / upgrade directly :)
    – Eray
    Jun 8, 2011 at 16:55
  • 4
    My "problem" is that I have no indication what this unsolicited password prompt is going to do. I have no reason to suspect that it is in any way related to my package manager.
    – ændrük
    Jun 8, 2011 at 17:03
  • 2
    Now that I know this prompt was generated by Apport, I'm sure glad I didn't delete my crash reports! That would have been exactly the opposite of what I want to do when a crash has been logged.
    – ændrük
    Jul 10, 2011 at 15:06

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