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I have two separate disks on my Mac running OS X 10.10.2. My home directory is on the non-boot disk. I am seeing some weird issues. For example, Chrome can download files to ~/Downloads, but Deluge and uTorrent complains that it cannot write to ~/Downloads.

I found a specific example that might highlight the root cause. When I create a file on the boot disk then move it to the non-boot disk the file is successfully moved, but an error is reported.

As an example I will first create a file (test.txt) on the boot disk (/tmp), then attempt to move it to the non-boot disk (~). Notice also that the group is 'wheel' when I create the file, but 'staff' after I move it.

> touch /tmp/test.txt

> ls -le /tmp/test.txt
-rw-r--r--  1 nick  wheel  0 Mar  1 17:49 /tmp/test.txt

> mv /tmp/test.txt .
mv: ./test.txt: set owner/group (was: 501/0): Operation not permitted

> ls -le ./test.txt 
-rw-r--r--  1 nick  staff  0 Mar  1 17:49 ./test.txt

How can I fix this issue? Thanks

Edit: "Ignore ownership on this volume" is off on the non-boot disk.

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Is ownership being ignored on the home folder volume? In the Finder, Get Info on the volume (note that it must be the volume itself, not a folder or file in it), expand the "Sharing & Permissions" section, and see if "Ignore ownership on this volume" is selected. If it is, click the padlock icon, authenticate, then switch it off.

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  • "Ignore ownership on this volume" is off on the non-boot disk.
    – Nick Allen
    Mar 3 '15 at 12:02
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Check the owner of the according directories. You can do so by ls -ld <dir>. You likely find that one has wheel as group and the other to be staff. Change the wrong one with

sudo chgrp staff <dir>

where <dir> is the name of the directory.

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