Sounds like you didn't run it as root (sudo). Of course running it that way can be dangerous, it is just a choice you have to make, a risk you have to balance. For my part I run it as root all the time, but I choose carefully what I let it do.
Fujitsu Lifebook AH532 Laptop. Intel i5 processor, 6Gb ram, Intel HD3000 graphics, Intel Audio/wifi. Realtek RTL8111/8168B Ethernet.Ubuntu12.10 (Unity), Mint14 (Cinnamon), Manjaro (Xfce).