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Hi I am facing an issue while deleting an .iso file from Linux x86_64 GNU/Linux.

Here are the permissions for the file:

    # ls -lrt
    -rwxrwxr-x 1 dev devgrp 2687934464 Apr 12 14:13 FileName.iso*

Here is the error I am getting:

    # rm -f FilsName.iso
    rm: cannot remove `FileName.iso': Permission denied

How to resolve this Permission denied error? I am logged in as root user.


$ lsattr
lsattr: Inappropriate ioctl for device While reading flags on ./FileName.02.md5
lsattr: Inappropriate ioctl for device While reading flags on ./FileName.02.iso
lsattr: Inappropriate ioctl for device While reading flags on ./FileName.03.md5
lsattr: Inappropriate ioctl for device While reading flags on ./FileName.03.iso
lsattr: Inappropriate ioctl for device While reading flags on ./FileName.04.iso

Strange issuse for me I can delete/move other files except FileName.04.iso.

share|improve this question
I was going to add as answer that the .iso file might be mounted in loopback mode. But I tried and you can actually rm the file from underneath an existing loopback mount. – Anthon Apr 16 '13 at 8:21
Could you please clarify more? Thanks – meMangesh Apr 16 '13 at 10:10
Your touch test, assuming test is next to FilsName.iso is taking care of Hauke's test nr 1. That does not apply. – Anthon Apr 16 '13 at 10:14
My comment was based on the fact that I thought that if you mount the filesystem in the .iso file (which most likely is a file with a cdrom image) that you cannot delete that file. But that is wrong. – Anthon Apr 16 '13 at 10:16
@Anthon You cannot delete the file, indeed. You can delete a directory entry. But as long as the file is opened the reference count in the inode is not set to 0 (which causes the real deletion of the file). This can lead to the strange situation that df tells you that a file system is nearly full but you cannot find the files which sum up to that capacity. Doing this with a kernel module is probably even more fun as to my knowledge you don't have any chance to determine that from userspace. The other ones can still be seen (and accessed / rescued) via /proc/*/fd – Hauke Laging Apr 16 '13 at 10:23

Usually this is not about the access rights of the file but about those of its parent directory (because deleting the file means deleting the entry in the file list; for this the directory has to be written). You need write access to the parent.

Under normal conditions this would not affect root. root can be blocked by

  1. read-only mounts
  2. special file system attributes (immutable flag, see lsattr)
  3. Edit: file system errors - run fsck
  4. kernel security features (AppArmor, SELinux)

I would check in this order.

share|improve this answer
Thanks Hauke for answer. for further clarification I can touch test and I can easily delete rm -f test. It indicates that the directory has write access. But don't know why am unable to delete .iso file in the same directory? – meMangesh Apr 16 '13 at 10:09
@Check_MK Why don't you do what I told you? Quoting myself: "see lsattr". – Hauke Laging Apr 16 '13 at 10:15
ahh by mistake i entered -r option in rm command. I updated the question accordingly. It still not permitted for rm -f file – meMangesh Apr 16 '13 at 10:24
@Check_MK Oh that's pretty cool. Who would ever need strace on a server... So what about installing it? – Hauke Laging Apr 16 '13 at 10:39
@Check_MK Let me sum up: You don't know what snapshots are and rather happily destroy all your data than ask. – Hauke Laging Apr 16 '13 at 11:24

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