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For some reason, I am unable to run any commands with su as my user. This was working before and I'm not sure what broke it. The funny thing is that I can su to root without any problems.


machine:~ myuser$ who
myuser console  Sep 28 01:10 
myuser ttys000  Oct  3 22:21 
machine:~ myuser$ sudo echo "test"
su: Sorry
machine:~ myuser$ su
sh-3.2# echo "test"
sh-3.2# exit
machine:~ myuser$

As far as I can tell, my user is part of the appropriate user groups (including wheel and admin):

machine:~ myuser$ groups myuser
staff wheel everyone _appstore localaccounts _appserverusr admin _appserveradm _lpadmin _lpoperator _developer
machine:~ myuser$ dseditgroup -o checkmember -n  . wheel
yes myuser is a member of wheel
machine:~ myuser$ dseditgroup -o checkmember -n  . admin
yes myuser is a member of admin

I am stumped. Does anyone have any ideas on how to get this working again?

Many thanks in advance.

share|improve this question
Wait, aren't you supposed to use sudo to run commands, and su to switch users? At least, that's what I always did in Linux (not an OS X user, though I assume it's the same)... – Bob Oct 5 '12 at 18:07
I agree with @Bob. sudo is used to execute a single command as another user (ie: root) while su is used to log in as another user entirely. – UtahJarhead Oct 5 '12 at 18:08
Argh! You're right guys, sorry about that. The same problem exists when using sudo though; I will update my question. – Leif Oct 5 '12 at 18:12
Argh, I'm such a noob! I got it now. I was using the wrong password for sudo. Sudo uses the admin password; not the root password. – Leif Oct 5 '12 at 18:17
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Use sudo to execute a single command and use su to log in as another user.

share|improve this answer
Thanks Utah, this is definitely correct. However, I still have the same issue when using sudo to run single commands from my user. I've updated my question accordingly. – Leif Oct 5 '12 at 18:15
Got it! I was using the wrong password (root password, instead of admin password). I will accept this as the answer, since it put me onto what I was doing wrong. Thanks again! :) – Leif Oct 5 '12 at 18:17
My pleasure, sir. – UtahJarhead Oct 5 '12 at 18:23
@Leif Specifically, it's not the "admin" password, but rather the password of the current user who is executing the command (who will usually also need to be an administrator). – Darth Android Oct 5 '12 at 18:35
Perfect, thanks for the clarification @DarthAndroid! – Leif Oct 5 '12 at 18:41

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