man gksu (Commandes) - a Gtk+ su frontend


gksu - a Gtk+ su frontend


gksu [ options ] <command>

gksudo [ options ] <command>


This manual page documents briefly gksu and gksudo

gksu is a frontend to su and gksudo is a frontend to sudo. Their primary purpose is to run graphical commands that need root without the need to run an X terminal emulator and using su directly.


These programs follow the usual GNU command line syntax, with long options starting with two dashes (`-'). A summary of options is included below.

Common Options:

--user <user>, -u <user>
Calls <command> as the specified user --message <message>, -m <message>
Replaces the standard message shown to ask for password for the argument passed to the option --sudo-mode, -S
Use sudo instead of su as backend authentication system. Notice that the X authorization magic will not work when using sudo for target users other than root. --title <title>, -t <title>
Replaces the default title with the argument --icon <icon>, -i <icon>
Replaces the default window icon with the argument --desktop <file>, -D <file> Use a .desktop file to get the name of the application and the icon from. --print-pass, -p
Asks gksu to print the password to stdout, just like ssh-askpass. Useful to use in scripts with programs that accept receiving the password on stdin. --disable-grab, -g
Disables the "locking" of the keyboard, mouse, and focus done by the program when asking for password --ssh-fwd, -s
Strip the host part of the $DISPLAY variable, so that GKSu will work on SSH X11 Forwarding. --login, -l
Makes this a login shell. Beware this may cause problems with the Xauthority magic. Run xhost to allow the target user to open windows on your display! This is ignored if running with sudo as backend for authentication. --preserve-env, -k
Preserve the current environments, does not set $HOME nor $PATH, for example.


On success, gksu will return 0. If an authentication error ocurred, it will exit with error code 3. If the user canceled the dialog or closed the window, it will return error code 2. On other error conditions, gksu will return 1.


Note that <command> and all its arguments should be passed as one single argument to gksu just like one would to when using su.


su(1), gksuexec(1).


This manual page was written by Gustavo Noronha Silva <> for the Debian GNU/Linux system (but may be used by others).