Debian 6 – HowTo enable sudo on your user account on Debian 6 (Squeeze)

Debian logoHello, in this short tutorial I want to show you, how you can run programs with root rights on your freshly generated user account, by adding the sudo command to user accounts.

What is sudo?

sudo – short for “substitute user do” – is a command which allows users to run commands with other user’s rights (e.g. root).

How to enable sudo for my user account on Debian 6?

You will need the root password for this set of commands.


Login to a user account.


Open a terminal window and type this into your window:

su root
adduser YOURUSERNAME sudo


Now reboot, and on your next session you will be allowed to run every program or command, which doesnt belong to you, or you don’t have the rights for with:

 sudo COMMAND 

I hope this helps some of you, because sudo isn’t automatically added to your user account on a fresh Debian 6 install.

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  • Thursday, 12. July 2012 - 12:05 Uhr

    I’m an absolute beginner @linux, and this is absolutely what I needed :) thx!

  • Friday, 3. August 2012 - 19:41 Uhr

    “because sudo isn’t automatically added to your user account on a fresh Debian 6 install”

    That’s for a reason. sudo has its uses but this kind of use (read: abuse) isn’t one of them.

  • Tuesday, 16. October 2012 - 4:22 Uhr

    When i try it it says “bash: SU: command not found” I am a completly newcomer into this linux world

  • Saturday, 23. February 2013 - 23:02 Uhr

    Thanks. Especially for Step3 ;-)
    BTW: exit and re-login works also.

  • Wednesday, 20. March 2013 - 16:22 Uhr

    you can just logout and log back in, you dont need to reboot.

  • Saturday, 13. April 2013 - 22:56 Uhr

    Thanks! Just what I was looking for as ecryptfs doesn’t let me encrypt the home dir of my “regular” sudoer as she is still logged in of course :)

  • Thursday, 16. May 2013 - 17:25 Uhr

    Big Thanks! lack of sudo was frustrating to say the least. :)


  • Friday, 24. May 2013 - 20:47 Uhr

    That was helpful for a linux noob like me. Thanks!

  • Monday, 15. July 2013 - 10:48 Uhr

    Do not work on Debian 7… and do you know why?

  • Friday, 19. July 2013 - 7:40 Uhr

    For anyone having trouble after adding the user simply type:

    apt-get install sudo

    Have fun!

  • Saturday, 7. September 2013 - 15:10 Uhr

    thank you very much

  • Friday, 8. November 2013 - 10:55 Uhr

    “adduser YOURUSERNAME sudo”
    you should use
    “su YOURUSERNAME ” else you will continue to use the terminal as root

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    You are awesome! I searched 20 minutes to find something useful – and you made it!
    Kudos to you, bro! :)

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