Root access

Some instructions here may cause serious problems. When unsure, see General precautions
Backing up your data is recommended. In case of trouble you might need to re-flash your device.

Having root access is an important step for users interested in modifying things "under the covers" of their tablets; without it, you won't have the necessary permissions to make those modifications. Root access is disabled by default on new tablets. Thankfully, the steps to enable root access are simple.


Why do I want root?

Root access is not required to install additional applications through Application Manager, open X Terminal or use your tablet in day-to-day operation.

If you want to edit the underlying system configuration, install applications through the command line or other low-level tasks, you will require root access.


Note: As rootsh is the simplest option, and does not require a desktop computer or running additional services, it is the recommended method for gaining root access.

rootsh is available in Extras, and can be installed from the Application manager if you have the Extras repository enabled. It is also available directly from

Then, from the shell, run:

sudo gainroot

(or root for short). This will give you a root shell.


Note: Some scripts require rootsh to run properly, so it's recommended to have both sudser and rootsh installed if you're using sudser.

sudser adds the user to sudoers so you can use the sudo command to run commands as root.

It is available in Extras, and can be installed from the Application manager if you have Extras enabled.

Then, from the shell, run sudo command. This will execute command with root privileges.

Note: Adding user to the sudoers without a password isn't best for security so use at own risk.


  1. Enable Extras (if it is disabled)
  2. Install OpenSSH (client and server)
    • This will prompt you to change the root password from the default, rootme
  3. SSH into your tablet as root
    • For local access, run ssh root@localhost
    • For remote access, run ssh root@tablet's ip address
  4. Use the root password entered at step (2) to log in

To debug issues with SSH connections, use the SSH '-v' option.

(To get SSH X forwarding ('-X' option) to work, you need to install xauth (or xbase-clients) package and enable X forwarding in the SSH server configuration file on the machine where you're connecting to.)

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