I formatted my notebook just now and I installed Ubuntu LTS 16:04, and the folder /root shows with a (X).

Question 1: Why?

Question 2: How to solve this problem?

ubuntu root folder with an x

Notebook- Dell Vostro-14-5480 Memory- 4GB Processor- i3 HD- 500

  • 4
    I'm not 100% sure, but it could be because only the user root (or a user with active superuser privileges) has access to the /root folder -- no other user has permission to see what's in that folder. – Nick Weinberg Jul 24 '16 at 15:28
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    Please don't call things problems that aren't. – Reinier Post Jul 25 '16 at 11:36

That's not an error - it's telling you that you do not have permission to read the files in that directory as a normal user as you will see if you click on it.

If you want to see the contents of the directory you must do so as root. In a terminal type:

sudo -i nautilus

You notice that you have to enter your password. Now you have root privilege so you can view, edit and delete anything you want, so you should be careful because you could break your system - you shouldn't use root permission unless you really need to.

When finished, type exit in the terminal to drop privileges.

You can learn more about permissions in Linux filesystems here and from the tag wiki.

  • Has gksu nautilus been deprecated? I haven't haven't opened nautilus as root in a while, but that's how I remember doing it. – Alcuin Arundel Jul 24 '16 at 15:45
  • @AlcuinArundel yes it has been (actually I have never opened nautilus as root except to test this command!) see here which I think is the canonical answer about gksu being deprecated, though you will find other mentions of this around here... – Zanna Jul 24 '16 at 15:57
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    pkexec is the new gksu fyi – cat Jul 24 '16 at 19:38
  • Thanks Scott Stensland and Zanna. now I understand. then if I use (sudo -i Nautilus) I can go up the folder (var / www / .....) and change any file (edit, delete)? – Marcello Felipe Jul 25 '16 at 11:30
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    @MarcelloFelipe If you have another question, I would suggest asking it as a new question. Each question should address one problem or a problem and its related issues, not a completely different problem entirely. – Thomas Ward Jul 25 '16 at 12:37

This is normal ... the X indicates you do not have permissions to view root folder ... If you want to use the file manager (nautilus) while logged in as root then from a terminal issue

sudo -i 

then in same terminal issue


once there you can see there is no longer the X

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