If you want to be able to use the sudo command in Debian to do superuser tasks as your normal user, then you need to edit the /etc/sudoers file to look like this. Use the visudo command to do the editing of the /etc/sudoers file, this will make sure the file is properly edited without errors before it is saved. in this example on Debian 6.0 I am using the username lovecraft and I have added myself to the /etc/sudoers file to be able to use sudo but still requiring to system to ask me for a password.
ubuntu ~ $ sudo cat /etc/sudoers # # This file MUST be edited with the 'visudo' command as root. # # Please consider adding local content in /etc/sudoers.d/ instead of # directly modifying this file. # # See the man page for details on how to write a sudoers file. # Defaults env_reset Defaults mail_badpass Defaults secure_path="/usr/local/sbin:/usr/local/bin:/usr/sbin:/usr/bin:/sbin:/bin:/snap/bin" # Host alias specification # User alias specification # Cmnd alias specification # User privilege specification root ALL=(ALL:ALL) ALL # Members of the admin group may gain root privileges %admin ALL=(ALL) ALL # Allow members of group sudo to execute any command %sudo ALL=(ALL:ALL) ALL lovecraft ALL=(ALL:ALL) ALL # See sudoers(5) for more information on "#include" directives: #includedir /etc/sudoers.d
The members of the group sudo can execute commands as root, and I could have added my user to this group, but I preferred to do it this way. using sudo requires you to have a very strong password on your normal user account as well as your root account unless you disable it with this command: sudo passwd -l root. This is how Ubuntu is set up, the root account is disabled and the sudo command is used to do superuser tasks. But you can set a password for the root account on Ubuntu by typing
sudo passwd root.