My father put a new superuser password on my laptop, and now i cant access my computer without him putting the password in.

I am really helpless. How can i get rid of his superuser control? Can i delete or change the superuser thing? Please help!!!!

  • Which distribution of linux?
    – James Watt
    May 19, 2010 at 13:18
  • 3
    I think we should be cautious to answer this question...to the OP is there a reason why he put a superuser password? Are you even running Linux? May 19, 2010 at 13:21
  • 1
    You can't delete root user
    – ukanth
    May 19, 2010 at 13:28
  • Or maybe it is someone else's computer? May 19, 2010 at 16:02
  • @ TiNS - but you can change root password easily if you have physical control of the machine.
    – DevSolar
    May 21, 2010 at 12:53

3 Answers 3


Assuming it's not a boot password:

You'll need to physically remove the hard disk and mount the drive in another machine. Edit /etc/sudoers and carefully add your username to the list. (I've done this once after mucking up my only admin account's group memberships but be careful! You're bypassing the normal protections on this file that check to make sure it's correctly formatted.)

Or, alternately, you can have a reasoned chat with your father about why he revoked your superuser access, and how you can earn it back.

I recommend the latter.


I second the notions about talking to your father. Circumventing his password will only get you into trouble.

But, to everyone who thinks you need to do outrageous things (like removing the hard drive) to get Linux root access:

The Linux root password is ridiculously easy to work around if you have control of the boot process.

All you need is access to the bootloader (init=/bin/bash) or a LiveCD (sudo su -, mount root device somewhere, chroot, passwd, voila.).

BIOS passwords, now, that's a different story. Unless you have the physical access to reset the BIOS.

Bottom line, you have physical access to the computer, it's hard to keep you out.

Now, original poster, please go back to the top and read the first line again.

  • I second this, note that if it's a sudoed system you don't actually have to change the password, just use visudo and they wouldn't even know you've broken in unless they go looking deliberately. EDIT: I don't actually advocate doing this.
    – Aster
    Aug 30, 2014 at 21:55

How about ask your father to remove the superuser password?

In any case, I don't understand why you'd need the superuser password just to access the computer - are you logging in as root? Or are you thinking of the BIOS password?

You must log in to answer this question.