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SubjectRe: Capabilities
Date
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Jesse Pollard <pollard@tomcat.admin.navo.hpc.mil> said:
> "Peter T. Breuer" <ptb@it.uc3m.es>:
> >"A month of sundays ago Jesse Pollard wrote:"
> >> There really shouldn't be 32K privileged programs, and I suspect that 255
> >> would be sufficient.

> >Reminds me of a certain statement about 640K.

> yeah it does... but at least I didn't say "255 should be enough for anybody".

> I have done counts on the total number of setuid programs (IRIX) and it was
> under 100. Some of these programs really didn't rate being setuid anyway so
> they lost the setuid/setgid bit, leaving only 55.

But many programs are used in system administration in a way that relies on
the almightyness of root, so this is not that clear cut. Lowly ls(1),
rm(1), mv(1), ln(1), your-editor-of-choice(1) come to mind... add stuff
like ifconfig(8), mke2fs(8), and the number is staggering.

One of the very nice things about Unix administration is that you use
mostly the same tools you use as an ordinary user, so it is unlikely that
your skill in using them rusts away from one use to the next. It also
exposes the tools to a much wider audience, so the pressure to fix
infelicities is much larger (and there is more manpower interested in
getting it fixed). This is worth preserving, IMO.
--
Dr. Horst H. von Brand mailto:vonbrand@inf.utfsm.cl
Departamento de Informatica Fono: +56 32 654431
Universidad Tecnica Federico Santa Maria +56 32 654239
Casilla 110-V, Valparaiso, Chile Fax: +56 32 797513

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