Ubuntu newbie here. I succesfully installed Ubuntu on a VM on Windows. I am now trying to run a localhost website using nginx.

I have read tutorials online on how to create your website in /var/www and that you will have to create also these folders if they dont exist.

So at the terminal I did this because the /var/www-folder did indeed not exist on my system:

root@Ubuntu-VM:/home/reveller# mkdir /var/www

Later I realized that /var/www is actually an existing directory. I have been creating /home/user/reveller/var/www while /var/www/ was already there.

I am now trying to access /var/www/ via terminal, but in my terminal prompt I cannot seem to go to a lower level in the filestructure than /home/reveller.


Question 1: How can I launch a terminal with prompt root@Ubuntu-VM:/var/www# instead of root@Ubuntu-VM:/home/reveller#?

I hope I am making myself clear. I read about sudo but the following makes no difference:

root@Ubuntu-VM:/home/reveller# sudo su

How do I traverse up the tree until I am in /var/?

Question 2 When I try to create new folders in /var/ via the GUI filebrowser, I am unable to -- the New Folder, New Document and Paste commands are greyed out and cannot be clicked. How can I open an elevated GUI filebrowser that allows me to create, copy and paste folders troughout the filestructure?


Changing your home directory

sudo usermod  -d /var/www  your_username

The reason that sudo su is not doing anything for you is because you are already the root user.

Traversing a directory

To traverse up a file tree, you have to use the cd command. So in your case, you would have to do cd /var/

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  • Thanks! In the terminal, i am now indeed able to browse to /var/ but if I am trying to copy the /www directory from my home folder to /var using cp -a /home/reveller/var/www/ /var/www/ (folder /var/www/ does not yet exist) I get an error: cp: cannot create directory ‘/var/www/’: Permission denied. User reveller is indeed root (by using whoami), so why is this not working and what can I do about it? – Pr0no Dec 13 '15 at 1:10
  • You have to be sudo by typing in sudo -i or sudo su either one will work fine. – Alex Lowe Dec 13 '15 at 1:27

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