No worries dale...
Since knoppix is a liveCD, you cannot set the root passwd, it is read only on the CD... you can set it once you boot, but there is NO ROOT PASSWORD by default. All you do is type su and you will see the prompt changes to a root prompt.
Basically, all prompts are the same, you will always be using BASH (which is a shell language, don't worry about that), that is to say, there are no different command shells... If you hit CTRL-ALT-F1 at the graphical environment, you will swithc to a console with no grapihcs, this is the classic linux login... one login, one shell. From this you can do anything you could do in the graphical environment, you are always in the same shell, the bourne again shell (bash). It is like windows in that regard, when you type cmd, you get the command prompt... no different levels, no permissions, just access to a text console.
You can also use QTparted in the system section in your start menu, it is basically a PartitionMagic clone. You do not need to do root or anything, just launch it.
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