Run commands as another user, with access to the X display

I've uploaded a simple wrapper around sudo, for executing commands as another user with full access to the X display (GLX works too); I call it xudo.

The script basically does two things:

  • Authorize the user:
    xauth extract - $DISPLAY | sudo -u SOMEUSER xauth merge -
    
  • Run the command preserving the DISPLAY environment variable:
    sudo DISPLAY="$DISPLAY" -u SOMEUSER SUDO_OPTIONS
    

    And you can of course use the -i or -s sudo options to get a shell as the other user, from where you can launch graphical applications.

All the other bits in the script are really just boilerplate.

Keep in mind that security-wise this is indeed a little stricter than the xhost +local: and xauth generate combination, as it authorizes only the user you want, but the command you execute still gets access to the whole X server, so you still don't want to run programs you don't trust using this method.


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