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chmod(1)                  BSD General Commands Manual                 chmod(1)


NAME

     chmod -- change file modes or Access Control Lists


SYNOPSIS

     chmod [-fv] [-R [-H | -L | -P]] mode file ...
     chmod [-fv] [-R [-H | -L | -P]] [-a | +a | =a] ACE file ...
     chmod [-fhv] [-R [-H | -L | -P]] [-E] file ...
     chmod [-fhv] [-R [-H | -L | -P]] [-C] file ...
     chmod [-fhv] [-R [-H | -L | -P]] [-N] file ...


DESCRIPTION

     The chmod utility modifies the file mode bits of the listed files as
     specified by the mode operand. It may also be used to modify the Access
     Control Lists (ACLs) associated with the listed files.

     The generic options are as follows:

     -f      Do not display a diagnostic message if chmod could not modify the
             mode for file.

     -H      If the -R option is specified, symbolic links on the command line
             are followed.  (Symbolic links encountered in the tree traversal
             are not followed by default.)

     -h      If the file is a symbolic link, change the mode of the link
             itself rather than the file that the link points to.

     -L      If the -R option is specified, all symbolic links are followed.

     -P      If the -R option is specified, no symbolic links are followed.
             This is the default.

     -R      Change the modes of the file hierarchies rooted in the files
             instead of just the files themselves.

     -v      Cause chmod to be verbose, showing filenames as the mode is modi-
             fied.  If the -v flag is specified more than once, the old and
             new modes of the file will also be printed, in both octal and
             symbolic notation.

     The -H, -L and -P options are ignored unless the -R option is specified.
     In addition, these options override each other and the command's actions
     are determined by the last one specified.

     Only the owner of a file or the super-user is permitted to change the
     mode of a file.


DIAGNOSTICS

     The chmod utility exits 0 on success, and >0 if an error occurs.


MODES

     Modes may be absolute or symbolic.  An absolute mode is an octal number
     constructed from the sum of one or more of the following values:

           4000    (the set-user-ID-on-execution bit) Executable files with
                   this bit set will run with effective uid set to the uid of
                   the file owner.  Directories with the set-user-id bit set
                   will force all files and sub-directories created in them to
                   be owned by the directory owner and not by the uid of the
                   creating process, if the underlying file system supports
                   this feature: see chmod(2) and the suiddir option to
                   mount(8).
           2000    (the set-group-ID-on-execution bit) Executable files with
                   this bit set will run with effective gid set to the gid of
                   the file owner.
           1000    (the sticky bit) See chmod(2) and sticky(8).
           0400    Allow read by owner.
           0200    Allow write by owner.
           0100    For files, allow execution by owner.  For directories,
                   allow the owner to search in the directory.
           0040    Allow read by group members.
           0020    Allow write by group members.
           0010    For files, allow execution by group members.  For directo-
                   ries, allow group members to search in the directory.
           0004    Allow read by others.
           0002    Allow write by others.
           0001    For files, allow execution by others.  For directories
                   allow others to search in the directory.

     For example, the absolute mode that permits read, write and execute by
     the owner, read and execute by group members, read and execute by others,
     and no set-uid or set-gid behaviour is 755 (400+200+100+040+010+004+001).

     The symbolic mode is described by the following grammar:

           mode         ::= clause [, clause ...]
           clause       ::= [who ...] [action ...] action
           action       ::= op [perm ...]
           who          ::= a | u | g | o
           op           ::= + | - | =
           perm         ::= r | s | t | w | x | X | u | g | o

     The who symbols ``u'', ``g'', and ``o'' specify the user, group, and
     other parts of the mode bits, respectively.  The who symbol ``a'' is
     equivalent to ``ugo''.

     The perm symbols represent the portions of the mode bits as follows:

           r       The read bits.
           s       The set-user-ID-on-execution and set-group-ID-on-execution
                   bits.
           t       The sticky bit.
           w       The write bits.
           x       The execute/search bits.
           X       The execute/search bits if the file is a directory or any
                   of the execute/search bits are set in the original (unmodi-
                   fied) mode.  Operations with the perm symbol ``X'' are only
                   meaningful in conjunction with the op symbol ``+'', and are
                   ignored in all other cases.
           u       The user permission bits in the original mode of the file.
           g       The group permission bits in the original mode of the file.
           o       The other permission bits in the original mode of the file.

     The op symbols represent the operation performed, as follows:

     +     If no value is supplied for perm, the ``+'' operation has no
           effect.  If no value is supplied for who, each permission bit spec-
           ified in perm, for which the corresponding bit in the file mode
           creation mask is clear, is set.  Otherwise, the mode bits repre-
           sented by the specified who and perm values are set.

     -     If no value is supplied for perm, the ``-'' operation has no
           effect.  If no value is supplied for who, each permission bit spec-
           ified in perm, for which the corresponding bit in the file mode
           creation mask is clear, is cleared.  Otherwise, the mode bits rep-
           resented by the specified who and perm values are cleared.

     =     The mode bits specified by the who value are cleared, or, if no who
           value is specified, the owner, group and other mode bits are
           cleared.  Then, if no value is supplied for who, each permission
           bit specified in perm, for which the corresponding bit in the file
           mode creation mask is clear, is set.  Otherwise, the mode bits rep-
           resented by the specified who and perm values are set.

     Each clause specifies one or more operations to be performed on the mode
     bits, and each operation is applied to the mode bits in the order speci-
     fied.

     Operations upon the other permissions only (specified by the symbol ``o''
     by itself), in combination with the perm symbols ``s'' or ``t'', are
     ignored.


EXAMPLES OF VALID MODES

     644           make a file readable by anyone and writable by the owner
                   only.

     go-w          deny write permission to group and others.

     =rw,+X        set the read and write permissions to the usual defaults,
                   but retain any execute permissions that are currently set.

     +X            make a directory or file searchable/executable by everyone
                   if it is already searchable/executable by anyone.

     755
     u=rwx,go=rx
     u=rwx,go=u-w  make a file readable/executable by everyone and writable by
                   the owner only.

     go=           clear all mode bits for group and others.

     g=u-w         set the group bits equal to the user bits, but clear the
                   group write bit.


ACL MANIPULATION OPTIONS

     ACLs are manipulated using extensions to the symbolic mode grammar.  Each
     file has one ACL, containing an ordered list of entries.  Each entry
     refers to a user or group, and grants or denies a set of permissions.  In
     cases where a user and a group exist with the same name, the user/group
     name can be prefixed with "user:" or "group:" in order to specify the
     type of name.

     If the user or group name contains spaces you can use ':' as the delim-
     iter between name and permission.

     The following permissions are applicable to all filesystem objects:
           delete  Delete the item.  Deletion may be granted by either this
                   permission on an object or the delete_child right on the
                   containing directory.
           readattr
                   Read an objects basic attributes.  This is implicitly
                   granted if the object can be looked up and not explicitly
                   denied.
           writeattr
                   Write an object's basic attributes.
           readextattr
                   Read extended attributes.
           writeextattr
                   Write extended attributes.
           readsecurity
                   Read an object's extended security information (ACL).
           writesecurity
                   Write an object's security information (ownership, mode,
                   ACL).
           chown   Change an object's ownership.

     The following permissions are applicable to directories:
           list    List entries.
           search  Look up files by name.
           add_file
                   Add a file.
           add_subdirectory
                   Add a subdirectory.
           delete_child
                   Delete a contained object.  See the file delete permission
                   above.

     The following permissions are applicable to non-directory filesystem
     objects:
           read    Open for reading.
           write   Open for writing.
           append  Open for writing, but in a fashion that only allows writes
                   into areas of the file not previously written.
           execute
                   Execute the file as a script or program.

     ACL inheritance is controlled with the following permissions words, which
     may only be applied to directories:
           file_inherit
                   Inherit to files.
           directory_inherit
                   Inherit to directories.
           limit_inherit
                   This flag is only relevant to entries inherited by subdi-
                   rectories; it causes the directory_inherit flag to be
                   cleared in the entry that is inherited, preventing further
                   nested subdirectories from also inheriting the entry.
           only_inherit
                   The entry is inherited by created items but not considered
                   when processing the ACL.

     The ACL manipulation options are as follows:

     +a      The +a mode parses a new ACL entry from the next argument on the
             commandline and inserts it into the canonical location in the
             ACL. If the supplied entry refers to an identity already listed,
             the two entries are combined.

             Examples
              # ls -le
              -rw-r--r--+ 1 juser  wheel  0 Apr 28 14:06 file1
              # chmod +a "admin allow write" file1
              # ls -le
              -rw-r--r--+ 1 juser  wheel  0 Apr 28 14:06 file1
                owner: juser
                1: admin allow write
              # chmod +a "guest deny read" file1
              # ls -le
              -rw-r--r--+ 1 juser  wheel  0 Apr 28 14:06 file1
                owner: juser
                1: guest deny read
                2: admin allow write
              # chmod +a "admin allow delete" file1
              # ls -le
              -rw-r--r--+ 1 juser  wheel  0 Apr 28 14:06 file1
                owner: juser
                1: guest deny read
                2: admin allow write,delete
              # chmod +a "User 1:allow:read" file
              # ls -le
              -rw-r--r--+ 1 juser  wheel  0 Apr 28 14:06 file1
                owner: juser
                1: guest deny read
                2: User 1 allow read
                3: admin allow write,delete

             The +a mode strives to maintain correct canonical form for the
             ACL.
                              local deny
                              local allow
                              inherited deny
                              inherited allow

             By default, chmod adds entries to the top of the local deny and
             local allow lists. Inherited entries are added by using the +ai
             mode.

             Examples
              # ls -le
              -rw-r--r--+ 1 juser  wheel  0 Apr 28 14:06 file1
                owner: juser
                1: guest deny read
                2: admin allow write,delete
                3: juser inherited deny delete
                4: admin inherited allow delete
                5: backup inherited deny read
                6: admin inherited allow write-security
              # chmod +ai "others allow read" file1
              # ls -le
              -rw-r--r--+ 1 juser  wheel  0 Apr 28 14:06 file1
                owner: juser
                1: guest deny read
                2: admin allow write,delete
                3: juser inherited deny delete
                4: others inherited allow read
                5: admin inherited allow delete
                6: backup inherited deny read
                7: admin inherited allow write-security

     +a#     When a specific ordering is required, the exact location at which
             an entry will be inserted is specified with the +a# mode.

             Examples
              # ls -le
              -rw-r--r--+ 1 juser  wheel  0 Apr 28 14:06 file1
                owner: juser
                1: guest deny read
                2: admin allow write
              # chmod +a# 2 "others deny read" file1
              # ls -le
              -rw-r--r--+ 1 juser  wheel  0 Apr 28 14:06 file1
                owner: juser
                1: guest deny read
                2: others deny read
                3: admin allow write

             The +ai# mode may be used to insert inherited entries at a spe-
             cific location. Note that these modes allow non-canonical ACL
             ordering to be constructed.

     -a      The -a mode is used to delete ACL entries. All entries exactly
             matching the supplied entry will be deleted. If the entry lists a
             subset of rights granted by an entry, only the rights listed are
             removed. Entries may also be deleted by index using the -a# mode.

             Examples
              # ls -le
              -rw-r--r--+ 1 juser  wheel  0 Apr 28 14:06 file1
                owner: juser
                1: guest deny read
                2: admin allow write,delete
              # chmod -a# 1 file1
              # ls -le
              -rw-r--r--+ 1 juser  wheel  0 Apr 28 14:06 file1
                owner: juser
                1: admin allow write,delete
              # chmod -a "admin allow write" file1
              # ls -le
              -rw-r--r--+ 1 juser  wheel  0 Apr 28 14:06 file1
                owner: juser
                1: admin allow delete

             Inheritance is not considered when processing the -a mode; rights
             and entries will be removed regardless of their inherited state.

             If the user or group name contains spaces you can use ':' as the
             delimiter

             Example
              # chmod +a "User 1:allow:read" file

     =a#     Individual entries are rewritten using the =a# mode.

             Examples
              # ls -le
              -rw-r--r--+ 1 juser  wheel  0 Apr 28 14:06 file1
                owner: juser
                1: admin allow delete
              # chmod =a# 1 "admin allow write,chown"
              # ls -le
              -rw-r--r--+ 1 juser  wheel  0 Apr 28 14:06 file1
                owner: juser
                1: admin allow write,chown

             This mode may not be used to add new entries.

     -E      Reads the ACL information from stdin, as a sequential list of
             ACEs, separated by newlines.  If the information parses cor-
             rectly, the existing information is replaced.

     -C      Returns false if any of the named files have ACLs in non-canoni-
             cal order.

     -i      Removes the 'inherited' bit from all entries in the named file(s)
             ACLs.

     -I      Removes all inherited entries from the named file(s) ACL(s).

     -N      Removes the ACL from the named file(s).


COMPATIBILITY

     The -v option is non-standard and its use in scripts is not recommended.


SEE ALSO

     chflags(1), fsaclctl(1), install(1), chmod(2), stat(2), umask(2), fts(3),
     setmode(3), symlink(7), chown(8), mount(8), sticky(8)


STANDARDS

     The chmod utility is expected to be IEEE Std 1003.2 (``POSIX.2'') compat-
     ible with the exception of the perm symbol ``t'' which is not included in
     that standard.


HISTORY

     A chmod command appeared in Version 1 AT&T UNIX.

BSD                              July 08, 2004                             BSD

Mac OS X 10.6 - Generated Thu Sep 17 20:07:19 CDT 2009