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Old 02-01-2013, 02:36 AM   #1
Weapon S
Registered: May 2011
Location: Netherlands
Distribution: Debian, Archlinux
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Question Permissions issue XFCE remove desktop items

I'm on Debian.
It is impossible to delete items on my desktop via Thunar, a terminal or right-clicking. I want to understand the problem before brute-forcing it.
The permissions for all files on the desktop look like this: -rw-r--r-- 1 usrname usrname.
No group write permissions. Is that a problem? Why so? And then why is it configured like that? (Was it probably something I did myself? :-X )
The permissions for the folder itself look like this: dr-xr-xr-x 4 usrname usrname.
Beginner explanation appreciated.
Old 02-01-2013, 06:34 AM   #2
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I suspect the problem is the lack of write permission on the Desktop dir. Here is what mine looks like, I can delete icons in the folder at will.

ls -l Desktop
total 64
drwxr-xr-x 2 cliff users 4096 Jan 22 09:17 ./
drwxrwx--- 98 cliff users 4096 Feb 1 06:52 ../
-rw-r--r-- 1 cliff users 65 Sep 13 2011 .directory
-rw-r--r-- 1 cliff users 22458 Nov 28 2011 .pdf
-rw-r--r-- 1 cliff users 178 Jan 23 2012 Bluetooth.desktop
-rw-r--r-- 1 cliff users 213 Jan 22 10:38 Compiz\ Fusion\ Icon.desktop
-rw-r--r-- 1 cliff users 189 Oct 28 2011 Mail-light.desktop
-rw-r--r-- 1 cliff users 199 Dec 23 2011 Root-ZenMap.desktop
-rwxr--r-- 1 cliff users 115 May 21 2012 Virgin\ Radio.pls*
-rw-r--r-- 1 cliff users 6284 Sep 13 2011 trash.desktop
Add write permission to the Desktop dir and see what happens.
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Old 02-05-2013, 09:34 AM   #3
Weapon S
Registered: May 2011
Location: Netherlands
Distribution: Debian, Archlinux
Posts: 259
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It was indeed the permissions of the directory. Also it is very likely something I had done myself. (In fact I have restored it so nobody saves anything on the desktop.) I still don't understand the difference between user and group, but I guess that is out of the scope of this question.
For those who are clueless:
chmod u+w Desktop
rm Desktop/That_file.desktop
chmod u-w Desktop

Last edited by Weapon S; 02-05-2013 at 09:36 AM.


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