[sudo-users] Microsoft "sudo" patent

David Ledger david.ledger at ivdcs.co.uk
Sun Nov 15 07:14:19 EST 2009

Mac OSX has been doing this with a GUI since its first release, last century.


At 19:03 -0500 12/11/09, Schernau, Ed D wrote:
>"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
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David Ledger - Freelance Unix Sysadmin in the UK.
HP-UX specialist of hpUG technical user group (www.hpug.org.uk)
david.ledger at ivdcs.co.uk

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