Despite some severe bugs in sudo, it remains the defacto tool to gain root shell or run command as another user on Linux, macOS, and Unix-like systems. The sudo command allows the system administrator to grant an individual user access to unprivileged commands. For instance, I can give developers the ability to restart the Apache webserver or PHP/Python process on a Linux server. Let us see how to remind developers and unprivileged users about the power of sudo for fun and profit. In this quick tip, I will show you how to add some spice to your sudo session with a lecture file on Linux or Unix.
Adding spice to your sudo session with a lecture file on Linux or Unix
Every seasoned Unix sysadmin knows the sudo command needs to be used with great caution. Hence sudo has the option to give a message using lecture.
How to force sudo to give a lecture every time our users use it
Edit the config file, run the
Append the following line after the initial options to make sudo to start the lecture every time a user uses sudo:
The above option controls when a short lecture will be printed along with the password prompt. It has the following possible values:
1. : Always lecture the user.
2. : Never lecture the user.
3. : Only lecture the user the first time they run sudo.
Save and close the file. Let us invalidates the user’s cached credentials and test it:
Now our Unix developers and other Linux users will get a boring lecture:
Lovely, right? But wait, there is more. We can change this message and make it more friendly. Again safely edit the sudoers file by typing the following command:
Append another config option:
Save and close the file when
using vi or vim. Here is the config file for your reference displayed using
the cat command:
sudo cat /etc/sudoers
sudo vim /etc/sudo_lecture.txt
Append stuff (download sudo_lecture.txt file to avoid printing garbage on screen):
│ mmmm │
# # # # │
│ # # m
# # # # # │
│ m # │
Please be cautious while using sudo as you could end up damaging the system.
Our fancy sudo warning or lecture is here:
Let us use the toilet command:
sudo sh -c 'toilet -f bubble --metal "Be careful with sudo" > /etc/sudo_lecture.txt'
Groot prompt so spice up to your sudo session
Try groot prompt (download the groot.txt file using curl command or wget to avoid printing escape characters on screen):
^00;33m |^ 01;37m. ^ 01;37m.^ 00;33m| ^ 01;34m I AM G ROOT!
^00;32m- ^ 00;33m\ - / ^ 00;32m_
^00;33m \_| |_/
^00;33m \ \
^00;31m __^ 00;33m/^ 00;31m_^ 00;33m/^ 00;31m__
^00;31m|_______| ^ 00;37m With great power comes great responsibility.
^00;31m \ / ^ 00;37m Use sudo wisely.