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Is there any difference between mounting a filesystem with gid=501 mount option vs chgrp 501 $fs after it's mounted?

I want to know if mounting with gid mount option buys me anything that chgrp (as root) on the filesystem after mounting doesn't.

I dont think it matters, but this is debugfs on a recent 3.x kernel.

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Since debugfs is a pseudo-filesystem and doesn't represent real storage, any attribute you change won't be remembered across boots (possibly not even across mounts).

For this reason, you should use mount ... gid=501 rather than adding complexity with a post-mount chgrp -R 501 ....

(In practical terms there will be little difference, assuming of course that debugfs implements chown and/or chgrp operations.

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