"Not working" might be slightly inaccurate, since it still seems to mount and umount things properly, but it's inaccessible to users other than the root user, which defeats the purpose entirely.

It's still installed on the system, and works fine from the root account, but my regular user accounts don't have sufficient privileges to use it. I'm not aware of having changed any permissions relating to mounting, and remove --purge pmounting followed by a re-install does nothing (both with apt-get and with aptitude.

Any idea what I kicked over by accident?


I assume your users are not in the correct group (plugdev), from man pmount:

Important note for Debian: The permission to execute pmount is restricted to members of the system group plugdev. Please add all desk- top users who shall be able to use pmount to this group by executing

          adduser user plugdev

  (as root).

Don't forget to either logout after you added the user to the group or use sg plugdev to switch to the new group.


You do not want to allow arbitrary users to manage pluggable devices. Arbitrary users includes the nobody user and the www-data user. Do you want a web script to mount/unmount your devices?

Instead, for "pluggable" devices, give the permission via:

adduser username plugdev

and then re-login as that user to see the changes become effective.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

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