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Old 11-02-2004, 01:52 PM   #1
LQ Newbie
Registered: Sep 2004
Distribution: Mandrake 10
Posts: 9

Rep: Reputation: 0
chmod won't do what I type in


I'm trying to use chmod to give all users read, write and execute rights on a FAT32 partition (called E/) on my hard drive, something that I have already made on other partitions. When I use chmod, it doesn't change the rights. Exemples on things I've tried (as root user):
chmod ugo=rwx -R E/
chmod o+w -R E/
chmod a=rwx -R E/
etc etc.

It simply won't work. Sometimes it takes a couple of seconds for the command to run, but nothing happens with the rights. I've had this problem before on Mandrake which I eventually sorted out in some random way, but when I installed SUSE it worked fine, till now and I can't get it to work as it should.

Am I doing something wrong? Is there an explanation? I would be really happy if someone could help me out on this.

/Mattias Olsson
Old 11-02-2004, 02:09 PM   #2
Registered: Jan 2004
Location: Duesseldorf /Germany
Distribution: Gentoo amd64 / Debian
Posts: 226

Rep: Reputation: 30
Fileattributes and Fat32


in fat(16/32) there is no concept of user/group/world permissions.
The only fileattibutes it knows are rw/ro and the archive bit (maybe a few more, but you might not want to know everything)

Anyway, chowning files to let other users read or write to certain files on a fat partions cannot be done.

You can however set the permissions on mount time, but remeber these affact the complete mounted partition.
(linux will not store this info on the fat partition, but fakes the permision transparently for the user,
so the permissions look like from a "real" filesystem)

Look into man mount for details, you are interseeted in "uid, gid, umask, fmask, dmask"
set them correctly and the groups you like can read /write the files.

Rember that ntfs has owner / group capabilities, and even ACL's,
but the ntfs implementeation under linux is not ready for primetime yet,
see other posts here about reading writeing to ntfs parttions.
(be cartefull)
Old 11-02-2004, 02:10 PM   #3
Registered: Mar 2004
Location: York, UK
Distribution: Ubuntu
Posts: 132

Rep: Reputation: 15
The FAT32 file system does not store modern-style file permissions. To make a FAT32 file system fit into the UNIX environment, all files on it are given arbitrary permissions at mount-time.

Have a look in the manpage for "mount" to see the options for the 'vfat' filesystem type. There's an option for setting the permissions of all the files in the filesystem, you'll want to add such a term to your fstab.


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