Running OSX/Lion, I have an external drive that I keep my iTunes music library on. While trying to figure out why ID3 changes to some music files (genre, etc) from within iTunes do not persist, I discovered that some of the files are locked and list 'macports' as the file owner. Odd.

I tried to run Disk Utility but "repair permissions" is disabled for the external drive. After searching around I saw some posts which suggested using the Terminal commands below to fix the permissions issue but they did not work for me.

I have used MacPorts on this machine (though usually not with this external drive connected) but found no information concerning it and permissions/file owner issues. I was able to unlock a test file and add my user account but I am unable to delete the 'macports' user.

Short of changing each file individually, is there anything else I can try?

sudo chflags nouchg /Volumes/volumename
sudo chmod 775 /Volumes/volumename

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  • 1
    Try the chown command first, then chmod. You need to take ownership before you can reset the permissions. – user3463 Oct 25 '12 at 2:24
  • @RandolphWest - that did the trick - thanks! I used 'chown -R' to traverse the entire drive. It added me as a duplicate user on some files but I suppose that won't hurt anything. – No Grabbing Oct 25 '12 at 2:57

Before changing permissions with chmod or chflags, you need to take ownership of the folder using chown.

Something like:

sudo chown -R skinnytod /Volumes/volumename

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