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Thread: Confused on file system permissions

  1. #1

    Confused on file system permissions

    I've been scouring and have had this question for a while. I must be totally out of the loop...

    As far as I can tell, a file can only have one group. Is this right? If so, it seems severly limitating. How would one, for instance, give one group rw and another group just r to a file? I'm totally confused on this.


  2. #2

    Re:Confused on file system permissions

    Yes, it does seem that you can only set it to one group. The only reason is like you are saying, having permissions for one set of user to read/write and one to read, can just be done with 'rw' for the group, and 'r' for the world.

    It is a bum deal with the single user thing though. I guess one thing you could do is have a group set to a dir like /home/group with a umask of 032 for the read function. Then you could make another dir for a different group with a umask of 012 for your 'rw' files. At least you can still assign users multiple groups.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2002

    Re:Confused on file system permissions

    Yup, the linux file permissions aren't very configurable. What you describe - two groups accessing the same file with different permissions - can only be approximated by having the file owned by group A, giving group A rw permission and all others r permission only. This is often not sufficiently flexible. However, there is the Linux Trustees ACL Project that addresses just this problem. and implements a much more elaborate filesystem access control system.

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