I think all the question is in the title : For the use of my laptop to be more convenient I made a chmod 4755 to /sbin/reboot and /usr/lib/pm-utils/pm-action so I don't have to make a 'sudo' before doing them.

Is that a really bad practice or it's ok for a personnal data with no sensitive data on it ?

  • Which OS (distrib, release, kernel)? Jan 31, 2013 at 0:08
  • Consider that many Linux systems setup the CTRL-ALT-DEL in the inittab to result in your system running reboot or shutdown -r. If you are already permitting anyone with physical access to initiate a shutdown just by a magic key-sequence, is their additional danger by permitting anybody with a shell run a reboot? I would guess probably not.
    – Zoredache
    Feb 1, 2013 at 2:28

1 Answer 1


Security, in my opinion, is only relevant and lack of it is a threat, when you have something to lose. If this is, say, your test machine and you put effort into doing nothing with that machine, loss of which can cause material or emotional distress, then I see no point in hardening the system. Security and convenience are complimentary trade-offs. More of one usually means equally less of the other. If you have nothing to lose on this machine, I am all for the convenience. Hence, laxing the security measures.

Having said that, in my 20+ years of UNIX sysadmin life, I have seen more than once, that the convenience measures being transported from insignificant machines, to those which are critically important to the enterprise operations and for what ? Just in the name of making something easier for the user, without any regard to the security implications.

So, my advice would be, go for it but don't be a slave to convenience. These things have a tendency of coming back to bite one in the ass :-)

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