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Thread: file issues, sheetrock damage....

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  1. #1
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    file issues, sheetrock damage....

    12.04 LTS.

    OK, so I have created a new user (for my Domestic Supervisor). She wants some stuff copied from her windows XP file share, which she gathered into a single folder. So I dutifully open the "home folder" app and after futzing around I find /usr/home/wife/Desktop and I then open another "home folder" app and find the Windows stuff and attempt to copy. It tells me no can do because Im not the owner. I am the owner, I bought and paid for this bloody machine and I installed the bleeping Ubuntu, and I want the dad-ratted blankety blank directory copied with all its contents, NOW!!!! I AM GOD ON THIS PC, understand, Ubuntu? No, I didnt think you would.

    So I try to do this same action through terminal with sudo and mkdir and cp and now it tells me that the folder, which I can clearly see on the home folder app, is not a directory (even though I created it with mkdir), so CP cannot copy to it. Sorry about that hole in the sheetrock, dear, I'll fix it this weekend, you wanted our little home office repainted anyway, right?

    SO....real simple, be gentle on the idiotic newb here, how do I copy a folder for my lovely bride from her windows share (which I can access) to the same folder on her Ubuntu desktop?

    Rhetorical question: Why is this so bloody difficult? Why am I being told that Im not the owner, when I am logged in as admin under the account that installed the OS? What obvious simple concept am I missing? I want to learn how to think in Ubuntu so I dont have to ask all these stupid questions.

  2. #2
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    Re: file issues, sheetrock damage....

    To answer you question of ownership. By default, the only true administrator in Linux is "root" Meaning outside of root, all users only have access to their home folder. The meaning of "administrator" for a typical Linux user is addition of your name to the Sudoers file. The Sudoers file gives a user privalidge to root commands and access to the system through your provided user account password. The reason for that is to make Linux more secure, if you were actually running as root all the time, it leaves your computer vunerable to attack, so by making all users use sudo, reduces that risk. Any typical user outside the sudoers file will not be able to do administrative stuff.

  3. #3
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    Re: file issues, sheetrock damage....

    Quote Originally Posted by alabamatoy View Post
    So I try to do this same action through terminal with sudo and mkdir and cp and now it tells me that the folder, which I can clearly see on the home folder app, is not a directory
    You can do this graphically with
    Code:
    gksudo nautilus

  4. #4
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    Re: file issues, sheetrock damage....

    Quote Originally Posted by oldos2er View Post
    You can do this graphically with
    Code:
    gksudo nautilus
    This produces a dialog box that says "Nautilus could not create the required folder "/root/.config/nautilus <linebreak> Before running Nautilus, please create the following folder, or set permissions such that Nautilus can create it."

    This is where Microsoft has it all over Linux. "following folder"? There is nothing following. And I have no idea how to "set permissions such that Nautilus can create it". But I think this sudo file explorer is probably exactly what I need. So how do I fix this new problem?

    Quote Originally Posted by DuckHook View Post
    So... real simple: the way to copy the folder is to log out, then log back in as your wife, then create the directory, then copy.
    This doesnt work, because under her account, the MS Windows partition is not visible or accessible. Maybe what I need is a /home/shared or something where all the users of this box can access and share files. That might work...

    Quote Originally Posted by DuckHook View Post
    I appreciate such niceties, but this is confusing to new users. They want to know why they can't fiddle with others' files. If you want to point out 755 permissions, you need to also explain what this means, in layman's terms. I agree with your correction, though.
    I understand chmod. I learned on unix a long time ago before the existence of GUIs. So I can usually get around reasonably well in terminal. What I am not understanding, I guess, is how to run some app in the GUI like filemanager as superuser. I guess I feel like I need to log in once as SU and do what I need to do as SU and then log out and back in as me as regular user. Maybe this "gksudo" will help me.

    Quote Originally Posted by DuckHook View Post
    I strongly encourage you to read this, this and this. They are wonderful primers about Ubuntu security. Especially important are the sections on ownership and privileges.
    Thanks, this is what Im after - some reading to understand the concepts so I dont have to act the fool on this forum and pester yall all the time with elementary questions.

    Now how do I fix the Nautilus issue?

  5. #5
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    Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr

    Re: file issues, sheetrock damage....

    Quote Originally Posted by alabamatoy View Post
    ... I am the owner, I bought and paid for this bloody machine and I installed the bleeping Ubuntu, and I want the dad-ratted blankety blank directory copied with all its contents, NOW!!!! I AM GOD ON THIS PC, understand, Ubuntu?
    You are confusing two senses of the word owner. You may have bought and paid for your box, but Ubuntu assumes that any one user (owner) would not want any other user (another owner) to peek into (much less modify) files for which they have no business accessing. Since this same behaviour is what makes it impossible for viruses to modify critical system files, those "restrictions" you are cursing are the same ones that make it unnecessary to install anti-virus bloatware in Linux.

    Basically, your beloved boss can access her files, but you can't--not by default anyways. There are very simple ways to accommodate your requirements, but this involves a conscious decision on either her part or the system admin's part to permit such access. In general, the concept of permissions is central to Linux operations and is almost entirely missing in XP. This is the same reason that XP is malware paradise whereas Linux offers such lean pickings.

    SO....real simple, be gentle on the idiotic newb here, how do I copy a folder for my lovely bride from her windows share (which I can access) to the same folder on her Ubuntu desktop?
    So... real simple: the way to copy the folder is to log out, then log back in as your wife, then create the directory, then copy. The act of logging out drops you as the current user (owner). Logging in as your wife makes her the current user (owner). Now, the creation of directory and subsequent copy can proceed because, as far as the system is concerned, the proper owner is properly messing around with files/directories which he/she is the only one allowed to mess with. Command line jockeys can use shortcuts to achieve this same result by openign up a terminal and doing:
    Code:
    su new_user
    but this is just confusing to new users so I don't recommend it. The logout-log-back-in-as-new-user method is conceptually the easiest for new users to understand.

    You may have created a subdirectory owned by root in your beloved's directory in your last attempt to copy the file. This subdirectory will cause problems and further confusion because it is not actually owned by your wife. If so, then delete that directory (you will need root privileges to delete because it was originally created by root-remember: no messing with directories you don't own). You can then create the directory properly, now logged in as wifey, thereby creating a directory whose owner is wifey.

    Rhetorical question: Why is this so bloody difficult? Why am I being told that Im not the owner, when I am logged in as admin under the account that installed the OS? What obvious simple concept am I missing? I want to learn how to think in Ubuntu so I dont have to ask all these stupid questions.
    It isn't difficult. However, it does require you to think in a different way and with far more respect for security than that for which XP ever gave a tinker's hoot. Linux is basically saying this: for the sake of safety and security, it does not assume that the person installing the OS is god. Instead, it assumes that you want to be god if and only if you expressly say you do, and even then, only for a 15 minute interval sufficient to do your god-thing. Therefore, every god-commandment must be prefaced with "sudo" (or gksudo, for graphical apps), absent which you are not god but just ordinary everyday Joe User who has no privilege to monkey around with any directory but his own.

    I strongly encourage you to read this, this and this. They are wonderful primers about Ubuntu security. Especially important are the sections on ownership and privileges.
    Newb: How far must I jump to clear the ledge halfway down?
    Guru: It's bad to jump off cliffs. Let's look at better options.
    Newb: Stop harping about "best practices" and just tell me.


  6. #6
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    Re: file issues, sheetrock damage....

    Quote Originally Posted by DuckHook View Post
    Basically, your beloved boss can access her files, but you can't--not by default anyways.
    Actually you can.

    By default a Ubuntu installation gives all users home directories 755 permissions, which means that any user can read any other users files.
    Cheesemill

  7. #7
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    Re: file issues, sheetrock damage....

    Quote Originally Posted by Cheesemill View Post
    Actually you can.

    By default a Ubuntu installation gives all users home directories 755 permissions, which means that any user can read any other users files.
    I appreciate such niceties, but this is confusing to new users. They want to know why they can't fiddle with others' files. If you want to point out 755 permissions, you need to also explain what this means, in layman's terms. I agree with your correction, though.
    Newb: How far must I jump to clear the ledge halfway down?
    Guru: It's bad to jump off cliffs. Let's look at better options.
    Newb: Stop harping about "best practices" and just tell me.


  8. #8
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    Re: file issues, sheetrock damage....

    Try "sudo -i nautilus" instead.

  9. #9
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    Re: file issues, sheetrock damage....

    Use gksudo with graphical applications.

  10. #10
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    Nov 2009
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    Re: file issues, sheetrock damage....

    Quote Originally Posted by ManamiVixen View Post
    Try "sudo -i nautilus" instead.
    Code:
    doc@upstairsPC-Linux:~$ sudo -i nautilus
    Initializing nautilus-gdu extension
    Nautilus-Share-Message: Called "net usershare info" but it failed: 'net usershare' returned error 255: net usershare: cannot open usershare directory /var/lib/samba/usershares. Error No such file or directory
    Please ask your system administrator to enable user sharing.
    Enable user sharing?

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