I'm sitting here nodding my head, laughing in a knowing sort of way, not a laughing at you sort of way. You know--been there, done that.
(Not your specific issues, but tweaking, reading, trying, failing, that sort of stuff.)
But I'm happy to hear you do have all those things working now.
Let's break things down a bit, okay?
You don't need a 'root terminal' per se. What you need is true root access. That does not mean sudo
. From a prompt, any prompt, in any terminal application, do this:
space minus sign[enter]
. You'll be prompted for root's password. Unlike sudo
, YOUR password isn't going to work here, it must be root's password. (If you don't have a root password, post again.)
Now you'll have a root prompt. You can do anything--and I do mean anything
, including wiping out the entire hard disk--while working with this power. So go slowly, pay attention to what you're doing, and if you're ever in doubt, PULL YOUR HAND AWAY before it presses the [enter] key!
Better safe than sorry.
Okay, so, where are the tar
files you want to install? And where do you want them to be installed? If they look like the Firefox file I looked at recently, just un-compress them (anywhere) and then move them to their end destination.
I'm making this all up as an example: Let's say you downloaded ABC.tar.bz2 into your /data/downloads directory. Uncompress it via whatever method suits you--GUI, command line, whatever. It should recreate its compressed files' directory/subdirectory structure. Once it's done that, you can simply move its main directory to the location you want it in. As in my earlier example, let's say that's /usr/local:
mv ABC /usr/local
That SHOULD be the end of it. It will most likely have root ownership and group, but if it's readable and executable by all then you're good to go.
To review (and please note I'm being this verbose because I assume others, who may have no Linux knowledge, may learn from it too), the reason you can't move files to the root filesystem (which is where /usr/local is located) is because that's part of the ROOT FILESYSTEM!
*nix will always want to protect its system files. So regular users can't do this, but logging in as root solves the problem.
If anything's unclear, let me know.