[sudo-users] Microsoft "sudo" patent

Schernau, Ed D Edward.Schernau at CITIZENSBANK.com
Thu Nov 12 19:03:14 EST 2009

"prior art" probably also covers sudo.

-----Original Message-----
From: sudo-users-bounces at courtesan.com
[mailto:sudo-users-bounces at courtesan.com] On Behalf Of Todd C. Miller
Sent: Thursday, November 12, 2009 10:51 AM
To: sudo-users at core.courtesan.com
Subject: [sudo-users] Microsoft "sudo" patent

I've already received a number of questions about US patent 7,617,530
that some people seem to believe might cover sudo.  I don't think
that is the case.

My reading of the patent indicates that it is geared towards GUI-based
environments where the user may need to perform some action (such
as setting the clock in a control panel) that requires increased
privileges.  The actual "invention" appears to be that the user is
able to perform an action as a different user without having to
type in the name of that other user when authenticating.  One example
given in that patent is the ability to click on a name in a list
of privileged users as opposed to having to type in a user name.

Sudo simply doesn't work this way.  When a command is run via sudo
the user is actively running the command as a different user.  What
is described in the patent is a mechanism whereby an application
or the operating system detects that an action needs to be run with
increased privileges and automatically prompts the user with a list
of potential users that have the appropriate privilege level to
perform the task.

 - todd
sudo-users mailing list <sudo-users at sudo.ws>
For list information, options, or to unsubscribe, visit:

Use of email is inherently insecure. Confidential information,
including account information, and personally identifiable
information, should not be transmitted via email, or email
attachment.  In no event shall Citizens or any of its affiliates
accept any responsibility for the loss, use or misuse of any
information including confidential information, which is sent to
Citizens or its affiliates via email, or email attachment. Citizens
does not guarantee the accuracy of any email or email attachment,
that an email will be received by Citizens or that Citizens will
respond to any email. 
This email message is confidential and/or privileged. It is to be
used by the intended recipient only.  Use of the information
contained in this email by anyone other than the intended recipient
is strictly prohibited. If you have received this message in error,
please notify the sender immediately and promptly destroy any
record of this email.

More information about the sudo-users mailing list