I am trying to run the statistics software Stata 11 on Ubuntu 11.10. as a regular user and I get the following error message:

bash: xstata: Permission denied

The user priviledges seem ok to me, tough:

-rwxr-x--x 1 root root 16177752 2009-08-27 16:29 xstata*

I would very much appreciate some advice on how to resolve this issue!

1 Answer 1


In the ls output you can see the file owner(root) and group(root). The user priviiledges apply to file owner (rwx), file group (r-x) and others (--x). Because you are not the root (and I suppose that you are not in the root group), only other (--x) applies to you. Thus you can run the file, but not read it. As a quick fix, try chmod +r xstata, this gives the read permission to all.

  • Thank you for your prompt reply. I followed your advice but now I get the following error message: "bash: .: xstata: cannot execute binary file" - Any idea what this could mean?
    – ddd
    Commented Nov 4, 2011 at 8:47
  • this means that bash doesn't know how to run the file. Take a look at this: ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=964335
    – Adam Trhon
    Commented Nov 4, 2011 at 8:55
  • 2
    @Dominik type file xstata to see what the file actually is. My guess is that if it is a binary program, it was compiled for different architecture (like 64 vs 32-bit or ARM arch. or simply a newer processor than yours). Commented Nov 4, 2011 at 10:00
  • Thank you all. I figured out that I just executed the file with the wrong syntax. It works with ./xstata. Cheers!
    – ddd
    Commented Nov 4, 2011 at 10:02
  • 2
    @Dominik what you wrote suggests that you previously run just xstata and the output was "cannot execute binary file" - right? If so, than there probably is a broken copy of the file somewhere else in your PATH - you should clean up. See also this question about running programs on Linux. Commented Nov 4, 2011 at 10:17

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