Having gotten used to the sudo-like interface presented in Ubuntu for most user-facing operations that require root access, the sudden lack of such convenience in Gentoo was grating. Fortunately, the solution is fairly easy, even if it isn’t mentioned anywhere that can be found by a cursory Google search. (I’m sure there’s an entry on the Gentoo forums, but let’s face it–for most people, if Google can’t find it, it doesn’t exist.)
The solution: Run gconf-editor, browse to apps/gksu, and then tick sudo-mode. That’s it!
Slightly longer answer: After wasting about 5 minutes searching for the answer, I found the solution in the man page for gksu which pointed to the gconf setting above.
You may have also noticed from this post that I’ve mentioned Gentoo for the first time in a while. There are a few reasons for this–which I’ll save for future posts–but it’s largely because of various irritations I’ve found with running Ubuntu for a while. Don’t worry, I’ll make an honest effort to share my rationale with you.