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Thread: Permissions nightmare

  1. #1
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    Default Permissions nightmare

    Hi all,
    I moved 2 drives from a dead MDDg4 into an older but working g4. One drive had the OS 10.5.8 & the other all my files on a mac partition & several YDL partitions. I cannot access files even though I have the same OS & passwords. In the "Get Info" all the controls are greyed out. I have searched the internet for weeks now but can't find a solution.

    I can't copy or backup the files & disk utility can't repair the disk. How can I change permissions to get access??

    Here is some info from a suggested terminal operation. I hope it makes sense to someone!

    Last login: Wed Nov 10 21:50:17 on console
    MDD-Mac-8:~ fudgie$ sudo chmod g+w .
    Password:
    MDD-Mac-8:~ fudgie$ ls -la / | head -5
    total 46445
    drwxrwxr-t 40 root admin 1428 11 Jun 20:27 .
    drwxrwxr-t 40 root admin 1428 11 Jun 20:27 ..
    -rw-r--r-- 1 fudgie admin 6148 24 Jul 10:20 .DS_Store
    drwx------ 3 root staff 102 29 Apr 2011 .Spotlight-V100
    MDD-Mac-8:~ fudgie$

    Thanks!
    The Meek Won't Want It!

  2. #2
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    A little more info please, and we should be able to sort this out.

    1. The drives you moved.....unchanged since they got pulled?
    2. You are not booting to the drives, just trying to access them correct?
    3. The 2 drives were originally boot drives, but now you just want to use them to access file and/or for storage?
    4. If that is all true, how are you accessing them? Installed in the machine, or externally via firewire or USB?
    5. If you do a Get Info on the 2 drives, do you see a check box that says "Ignore privileges on this volume" anywhere?


    If yes, check it, and try again.....if not: A quick shortcut that can sometimes resolve this. You can create the same (exact) user on the new machine as was used on the old. Follow this scenario:

    Machine 1 = user is Bill
    Machine 2 = user is Ted

    Move a HD from machine 1 to machine 2. Still boot normally to machine 2, log in as Ted. Can't access Bill's stuff....cause you are not Bill.

    While logged in as Ted on machine 2, open system preferences, and create a new user named Bill (keep in mind it must exactly match the user name from machine 1, and is case sensitive. Now, log into machine 2 as Bill, and you may be able to access Bill's stuff.

    ---

    Next Steps

    There are several other ways to handle this. Permissions can be quite tricky, and are more complex than they appear. One key point is that one must have access to an enclosing directory (folder), and the files or folders you actually want to open or copy. Folders nest inside of folders....it gets deep.

    The following assumes you want access to the files/folders/data while on the machine you are working on....but don't mind or need to get access on another machine......like say the original. So, essentially you are permanently taking control of files, with no need to open them again on the original machine with the original account.

    .....Have to run, will check back tomorrow.
    Last edited by unclemac; 08-11-2013 at 12:02 AM.
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  3. #3
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    Default

    1. The drives you moved.....unchanged since they got pulled

    The Files drive - have written one or two pdf's to it to see if it worked and it did.

    1. You are not booting to the drives, just trying to access them correct?

    One drive I boot to and all is well. The other is the problem.

    1. The 2 drives were originally boot drives, but now you just want to use them to access file and/or for storage?

    No. Just one boot drive as above but! There are still several linux (YDL) partitions on the Files drive as the old'dead machine was a dual boot.

    1. If that is all true, how are you accessing them? Installed in the machine, or externally via firewire or USB?

    Both drives installed in the machine. Problem "Files" drive is ata, the OK boot drive is SATA.

    1. If you do a Get Info on the 2 drives, do you see a check box that says "Ignore privileges on this volume" anywhere?

    Yes, but "greyed out" on Files drive. Is not there on boot drive.
    The Meek Won't Want It!

  4. #4
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    Default

    & yes to your last paragraph.. the old machine is dead & buried.
    The Meek Won't Want It!

  5. #5
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    OK, so....for the Mac partitions, we can tweak permissions.

    For the Linux partitions.....I hope we can tweak permissions, but it may depend on the file system (how the volume was formatted). Linux flavors are all POSIX based permissions systems, but I don't know about format compatibility. May have to do some investigation....dont see anything here that is a deal breaker.

    Lots of ways to tweak permissions. Since you run YDL, you are not scared of CLI. I prefer a GUI if I can get it. For this scenario, I would recommend using batchmod for 10.5.

    The following changes permissions so that any admin user account has full access to the entire user director that you change. Very handy, simplifies if you use multiple accounts or boot drives/computers. It does however, allow all admin user accounts full access, so much less secure. This is why Apple and all other flavors of Unix/Linux do not allow this by default.... The goal here is to change the Group, not the Owner. If you proceed, just remember that the only user accounts that cannot access the data will be non-admin accounts. You can always un-do this later, or consolidate data, and delete accounts to restore security.

    1. Download and unpack the application.
    2. Open it up, and navigate to the user folder that contains the file you want; Select the user folder in question (either use the File.. button or drag the folder to the path box).
    3. Change the Group to admin (from the very large pull down list), and set the check boxes for full access for Group (check: read, write, and execute) plus options, plus Apply to enclosed folders and files. Should look like this, with your own Owner:
      .
    4. Verify all boxes are checked, and click Apply.
    5. The process can take a while, depending on the directory size. Let it chug away until complete.
    6. Once complete, log out and back in (or restart) to reset the Finder, and test access from your preferred admin account.
    7. If successful, repeat the steps for other user accounts you want to access.



    Once this is done, from any admin account, you should have full access. One glitch is that to get the Finder icons to properly update (so you correctly do not see the little prohibit/locked folder icons), it is easiest to log out and back in once you are done with the above.

    I suspect this will work on the Linux partitions too......but like I said, it is possible that there may file system issues too, beyond permissions. Don't know for sure.
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  6. #6
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    Confused

    Unfortunately this has not worked. I followed the procedure with a folder and then with an individual file but they remain exactly as they were.

    The Meek Won't Want It!

  7. #7
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    So, what exactly do you see? Do you see a prohibited folder icon? Or are the file/folders read only?

    Which partition is this on, and what format is it?

    If it is Linux, you may need something like this to sort it out. Looks like MacFUSE could be a good option....even though it is no longer maintained, it should be fine for 10.5 and older Linux I expect.

    I also see in the article I linked to the option to change the admin UID in Linux to match Mac OS X.....might be an easy fix......but I never had this problem to solve, so I can't say.
    Last edited by unclemac; 08-13-2013 at 03:57 PM.
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  8. #8
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    I appreciate your time and attention to this..

    Trying to access the Mac formatted partition -Files- only. Don't care about the Linux partitions.

    All files and folders appear as normal in the finder. If I select a file & "Get Info" all access is still greyed out. If I attempt to copy to another location I get a warning that the operation couldn't be completed as some data on the file could not be read. If I attempt to open a file directly from the Files partition I get a message ...

    "filename" may be read-only, or you may be trying to access a read-only location. Or, the server the document is stored on may not be responding."
    The Meek Won't Want It!

  9. #9
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    OK, well, at least it is not a Linux file system issue. One variable down.

    So, since you have BatchMod now, drag this same file into the file path box. It has a handy feature of being an inspector, so just drag a file to it and it will display the permissions of the file instantly.

    Could be they still are wacky. A screen shot would be very helpful.

    One other thing that that error reminds me of.....Time Machine Backups. TM uses a different system format, and there is no way to move files out of the TM backups "in progress" directory manually with the Finder. You can however, use other migration tools.

    One I used to use for such issues with some good success was Get Backup. The free version was a godsend for such things. I'm sure there are others too, though many tried and true mac tools won't work because they are built on Rsync.....and only work on HFS+ volumes....

    Anyway, a bit of a stretch, but I have seen scenarios where it is not possible to move files with the Finder, but you can with other tools. Might give it a shot, a good tool, and easy to use to synchronize 2 folders (make copies of files from the target, to the destination)
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  10. #10
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    Attachment 1058

    I haven't used TM.
    The Meek Won't Want It!

  11. #11
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    OK.......see how Group only has r(read) checked?

    Try changing Group from staff to admin, and check r, w, and x, and Clear ACLs, and push apply to change the permissions.

    As long as you are logged in as an admin user (as fudgie I assume), you should be able to now edit the file.

    One caveat may be the permissions of the enclosing folder, but lets just try this first.
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  12. #12
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    Checking the Remove ACLs is very important in later OSes, as there are 2 sets of permissions:

    ACLs
    POSIX


    Apple introduced ACLs to make sharing and permissions easier when interacting with Windows machines, but they make it harder to troubleshoot as they are invisible (varies a bit by OS). And ACLs take precedent over POSIX, so they over ride what we see.... Fun!

    Removing ACLs cuts the problem down to size, and lets us work with visible permissions too. No harm, 10.4 and back have no ACLs, and nobody cared unless they had a Windows network server or some such thing.
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  13. #13
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    Have you tried migration assistant?
    Damien,

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by unclemac View Post
    OK.......see how Group only has r(read) checked?

    Try changing Group from staff to admin, and check r, w, and x, and Clear ACLs, and push apply to change the permissions.

    As long as you are logged in as an admin user (as fudgie I assume), you should be able to now edit the file.

    One caveat may be the permissions of the enclosing folder, but lets just try this first.
    I have tried with the enclosing folder & individual files but after logging back in and checking "Get Info" they have not changed at all.

    I'm not technically skilled in this area but it seems like the whole drive/partition knows it's not in the same machine so prevents any changes that I make. Even when I drag a folder or file into BatChmod the "Unlock" button is always greyed out.
    The Meek Won't Want It!

  15. #15
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    A stumper. Feels like a file system problem. You might open Disk Utility and check and see what format this partition in question is formatted as. Should be HFS+.

    Regardless, if you really cannot change permissions with BatchMod, I would suggest next moving to the File Sync option I mentioned before.....Get Backup.
    Tools like this can often do more than the Finder, and stuff it simply cannot in situations like this. If you can get the files moved, then permissions should be a minor affair.

    Oh, and forget about checking permissions with the Finder...it is (ironically) one of the worst tools for checking and fixing permissions. I would really recommend using BatchMod (or something similar) for any inspection/testing/changes.


    HOLD THE PHONE:

    Wait....you said in the Get Info wind on the partition everything is grayed out??

    Missed that. Click on the tiny lock icon and see if you can authenticate. Like this.
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by unclemac View Post
    HOLD THE PHONE:

    Wait....you said in the Get Info wind on the partition everything is grayed out??

    Missed that. Click on the tiny lock icon and see if you can authenticate. Like this.
    The Ignore button is also greyed out - The partition is Mac OS Extended -I will try a few things and get back.
    The Meek Won't Want It!

  17. #17
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    Get Backup = Intel Mac only
    Currently running a dual 533 PPC.
    The Meek Won't Want It!

  18. #18
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    I doubt that my input here will be of any serious considerations to the subject. But are all the drives ATA in the 533, Unclemac would that or the master slave setting make a difference some how? What OS is the 533 running?

    Now I'll stop meddling

  19. #19
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    please....meddle.

    Actually, you bring up a point from a decade ago......some ATA drives could be jumped to be read only?? Maybe not, but worth ruling out.

    -----

    Greyed out: Got it, but what about the tiny little lock icon? Is it locked, or unlocked?

    If locked, click it. Does it unlock?


    ----

    Get Backup: Looks like they still have older PPC versions available here.
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  20. #20
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    OS is 10.5.8, Drive in question is ATA. OS drive is SATA.

    Yes, lock is locked and greyed out cannot be clicked.
    The Meek Won't Want It!

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