Here is the situation. I have user access to a server and root access to the same server. I want to edit files for a user that I don't have password information for on the server. ssh'ing as root is disabled, so I typically ssh in as my user and then su to root. Then I cd to the user of interest's home directory and then su to the user of interest (provided the user of interest has shell access). If the user doesn't have shell access to the server I am forced to modify the files as root, which I loathe to do. So my first question is, how can I safely modify the user's files without being root if the user does not have shell access?
My second question involves transferring files to the user's account using a graphical SFTP program from my desktop. Since I don't have the user of interest's login information (and the user may not have shell access) I can't sftp directly into the user's account, nor can I sftp as root. So instead I use my graphical SFTP program to sftp into my user account's home directory on the server. Then I transfer the files via the SFTP program to my user account's home directory on the server, and then manually copy them as root from my user's home directory to the user of interest's home directory. Obviously this is inefficient and I long for a better solution. What is it?
Note: I realize that I can use the command line
scp program to transfer the files directly to the user of interests home directory, but I want to use a graphical SFTP program.