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Even being root I can't do the following:

# cat /dev/vcs1
cat: /dev/vcs1: Operation not permitted

And the rights are set correctly:

# ls -o /dev/
crw-r--r-- 1 root    7,   1 Aug  5 22:00 vcs1

What am I doing wrong?

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You do have virtual consoles enabled, right? And there is a VC #1? Also, do you have e.g., SELinux or some other access control loaded? –  derobert Aug 14 '13 at 16:33
    
The vcs1 of my example is in use. How do I enable the vcs devices? I also seem to have AppArmor installed but: # apparmor_status -bash: apparmor_status: command not found –  Wenj Aug 14 '13 at 17:36
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