Linux # Permission permission making my pal crazy

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Few days back I helped my friend to migrate from Windows XP to Debian GNU/Linux. Most of the time he uses desktop for watching TV, writing letters, dial up Internet.
He was quite happy as he was able to get rid of crashes, viruses and all bad stuff. I also gave him one nice Linux book and couple of other html/pdfs to understand Linux. Quickly he realized that using system as root user is bit dangerous. So he created the one more account called jmmy. However, with this new account he was not able to mount USB disks, his old FAT32 data partition (I removed windows XP, no dual boot :D), dial out Internet, watch tv etc. Then he called me and asked for help (after all I migrated to him to Linux).


As a most of UNIX admin do I told him to read the man pages (RTFM) of automount, add user to appropriate group, use, blah blah… on other end of phone he didn’t sound excited at all. He politely asked me, buddy when you are going to free? I replied I’m busy and I will get you back ASAP.

Meantime my friend started search on google and ended with lot of mess in computer (read as Linux system). I was bit worried to call him in the evening, because this call means go and attend his computer. Finally I called him to see what he his doing, as expected by me he was not able to fix single problem. I promised to visit him by this weekend.

Finally I paid visit to his house and fixed the problem as follows:
(A) Allow normal user to watch tv via xawtv
(B) Allow normal user to dialout Internet
(C) Allow normal user to mount linux partitions, usb stick/pen device


Posted by: Vivek Gite

The author is the creator of nixCraft and a seasoned sysadmin, DevOps engineer, and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. Get the latest tutorials on SysAdmin, Linux/Unix and open source topics via RSS/XML feed or weekly email newsletter.