/usr/bin/editor: line 40: /tmp/crontab.BTXqyZ/crontab: Permission denied
/usr/bin/editor: line 40: exec: /tmp/crontab.BTXqyZ/crontab: cannot execute: Success
crontab: "/usr/bin/editor" exited with status 126

crontab -e was working fine a few months ago. a cron job i set up few month ago is still running successfully.

i wanted to create a new cronjob for another program and i got the above error....


May be /tmp access mode is wrong. Check it with ls -dla /tmp

Right mode for tmp is 1777 (drwxrwxrwt)

$ ls -dla /tmp drwxrwxrwt 7 root root 4096 Jan 12 00:00 /tmp

Correct it with sudo chmod 1777 /tmp. 1 is sticky bit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sticky_bit and 7 is read-write-execute for user, group, world


/usr/bin/editor is apparently a script, that on line 40 fails to start the actual editor, apparently trying to execute the crontab file to edit, perhaps because the path to the editor is supposed to be supplied (in an environment variable?) and isn't.

Just guessing. Have a look at that script and Google on /usr/bin/editor.

  • 1
    Nice guess! If it was so, you could try to add export EDITOR="nano" in your .bashrc (assuming you're using bash)
    – dag729
    Jan 10 '10 at 21:07

probably that's just a permission issue of /tmp: have you already checked it with ls -la?

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