Rsync permissions...

tim.conway at tim.conway at
Sat Mar 23 10:58:12 EST 2002

You're right about the switches, but you're sending to a process running 
as 'nobody', which is the default for rsyncd, so no owner, no devices, and 
in this case, no group, unless you make nobody a member of all the groups. 
 In order to preserve ownerships, you'll have to run the rsync as root.
++++++++++insert somewhere inside module [home]+++++++++++++++++
uid = root
gid = root
+++++++++++++++++++++++++end insert++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
At least use a password.  Frankly, to do this, I'd suggest you use rsync 
over ssh transport, rather than over the rsync internal transport.

Tim Conway
tim.conway at
Philips Semiconductor - Longmont TC
1880 Industrial Circle, Suite D
Longmont, CO 80501
Available via SameTime Connect within Philips, n9hmg on AIM
perl -e 'print pack(nnnnnnnnnnnn, 
".\n" '
"There are some who call me.... Tim?"

"Brad" <rsyncuser at>
Sent by: rsync-admin at
03/22/2002 01:47 PM

        To:     "Rsync Mailing List" <rsync at>
        cc:     (bcc: Tim Conway/LMT/SC/PHILIPS)
        Subject:        Rsync permissions...

I am transferring some files from a RH7.0 machine to a RH7.2 machine as 
with a cron job, using the following:

rsync -avt /home homeserver::home
rsync -avt /etc homeserver::etc

Some of the files transfer OK, but I get:

building file list ... done
failed to set permissions on home : Operation not permitted
failed to set permissions on home : Operation not permitted
wrote 14591 bytes  read 40 bytes  4180.29 bytes/sec
total size is 1249200945  speedup is 85380.42
@ERROR: chroot failed

I have created the destination home directory as:
drwxrwxrwx   29 root     root         4096 Mar 20 00:07 home

The source home directory is:
4 drwxr-xr-x   28 root     root         4096 Mar 19 15:12 home

When I checked the transferred files permissions inside the destination 
directory, I get:

4 drwx------    4 nobody   nobody       4096 Nov 28  2000 admin
4 drwx------    4 nobody   nobody       4096 Aug 27  2001 arkeia

so this problem looks like a permissions/ownerships issue of some kind.

According to the rsync documentation, the -a switch contains:

-p, --perms                 preserve permissions
-o, --owner                 preserve owner (root only)
-g, --group                  preserve group
-D, --devices              preserve devices (root only)

So as I understand it, rsync will take all the permissions and ownerships
from the source files and apply them to the destination files, and yet I 
getting "nobody" as a group and owner on the destination files and

Can anyone shed any light on this?


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