Unix & Linux Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for users of Linux, FreeBSD and other Un*x-like operating systems. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I'm a newbie in the GNU/Linux-Ubuntu world. I have a problem copying files to a directory on Ubuntu 12.04. I create a directory in the home directory so that the path where I want to copy to is:


But when ini run the following command in the terminal to create a sample file as follows:

francisco-vergara@Francisco-Vergara:/home/sixven/camp_sms/inputs$ touch test_file.txt
touch: can not make `touch' on «test_file.txt»: permission denied

I can not copy files directly in that directory. How can I assign permissions with the chown & chmod commands to copy the files?

I do not know which user and group to use.

share|improve this question
How did you create the directory? Why is it in /home/sixven? Why isn't it in your home directory? – terdon Mar 12 '14 at 16:06
From what you have copy-pasted, you are running touch as user francisco-vergara, but your directory is in /home/sixven is that really the home of user francisco-vergera or does it belong to a sixven user ? You should clarify what you want to do exactly. Write in another user's home ? Share that directory among a group ? – Leiaz Mar 12 '14 at 16:15
up vote 18 down vote accepted

First of all you have to know that the default permission of directories in Ubuntu is 644 which means you can't create a file in a directory you are not the owner.

you are trying as user:francisco-vergara to create a file in a directory /home/sixven/camp_sms/inputs which is owned by user:sixven.

So how to solve this:

1-You can either change the permission of the directory and enable others to create files inside.

sudo chmod -R 777 /home/sixven/camp_sms/inputs

This command will change the permission of the directory recursively and enable all other users to create/modify and delete files and directories inside.

2-You can change the owner ship of this directory and make user:francisco-vergara as the owner

sudo chown -R francisco-vergara:francisco-vergara /home/sixven/camp_sms/inputs

But like this the user:sixven can't write in this folder again and thus you may moving in a circular infinite loop.

So i advise you to use Option 1.

Or if this directory will be accessed by both users you can do the following trick:

change ownership of the directory to user:francisco-vergara and keep the group owner group:sixven.

sudo chown -R francisco-vergara /home/sixven/camp_sms/inputs

Like that both users can still use the directory.

But as I said you before It's easiest and more efficient to use option 1.

share|improve this answer

To change the file ownership, do this as root:

chown -R user:user /home/sixven

If you decide to go the chmod way:

If you know that the user is part of the group of the file

chmod -R g+rw /home/sixven


chmod -R o+rw /home/sixven

But this way is not too secure.

share|improve this answer

The default UMASK 022 (in Ubuntu ), so the permissions for /home/username becomes 755. and you logged in as user francisco-vergara and trying to creating files in user sixyen Home: i.e. /home/sixven. it does not have write permission to Other users Only User/Group of sixven has write access.

if you want write access in that directory, then you need to be part of Group sixven using usermod -G sixyen francisco-vergara OR chmod -R 777 /home/sixven (don't use it's bad practice ).

share|improve this answer
Aren't you rushing things a little? We still don't know the OP's situation. – guntbert Mar 12 '14 at 17:46

protected by Community Jun 12 '15 at 10:23

Thank you for your interest in this question. Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site.

Would you like to answer one of these unanswered questions instead?

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.