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I will start of by saying that this is a homework assignment but I am stuck. There are two different parts that I am stuck on and may have the same solution.


I have two users called ken and larry. I have added larry to the group ken and have given rwS permissions over ken's folder (drwxrwSr-x 2 ken ken 4096 2012-10-14 20:02 ken). When I switch user (su) to larry and try to create a file in ken's directory I get a "Permissions denied error". I have tried logging out and back in and switching larry's main group to ken but nothing gets me passed the "permissions denied error".

=== END ===

=== Second Problem ===

I have a folder called /ballots and I am supposed to give others write permissions but not list (read is not mentioned). I gave others -w- privilege but user's can't write files to the directory with an editor (vi). The permissions on the directory are drwxrwx-w- 2 root root 4096 2012-10-14 20:06 ballots

=== END ===

Any help or pointers would be greatly appriciated. I don't expect you to just answer my questions and do my homework for me I am just trying to get some help since I am stuck.


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up vote 2 down vote accepted


The ken's directory should be given g+rwxS permissions to let it work.


Give the o+xw permissions on ballots directory. The execute (search) permission is required to create files in the directory.

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These worked wonderfully for me. Thanks for the help – Gerad Bottorff Oct 15 '12 at 4:40

Make sure Kens folder is associated with the group you created.

ie: chgrp ken kensfolder - Now kensfolder belongs to the "ken" group. As long as you added larry to this group he now has access to kens folder with the group permissions you choose to set. If you want larry to have permission to write to every file and subdirectory within ken, you must append the -R switch to chmod to allow for recursive access.

For your second problem you would want to stick write and execute permissions on the folder and omit the read (list as you put it.) so essentially...


Hope that helps.

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Thanks for the advice. For the first problem the foler was already in ken's group but the advice for the second part is great. Thanks – Gerad Bottorff Oct 15 '12 at 4:41

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