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Repair disk permissions with Disk Utility

Keep in mind, however, that this approach introduces the security risk that all local users will have full access to the contents of external volumes. Because some may find this an unacceptable security risk, you can disable the default behavior and force Mac OS X to honor ownership on external volumes. See All Related Store Items. All rights reserved. Publishers of technology books, eBooks, and videos for creative people. File Systems By Kevin M.

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White Oct 29, Apple Training Series: NOTE Applying permissions to the enclosed folder items will apply all permissions settings to all enclosed items, not just the changes you recently made. NOTE The Mac considers any locally mounted volume that is not the system volume to be an external volume. Related Resources Store Articles Blogs. Account Sign In. Restart your Mac by holding the c key while it is booting up.

How to Set Mac OS X Snow Leopard File Permissions - dummies

This will force your Mac to start from the OS X install disk. The startup time will be a bit longer than usual, so be patient. When your Mac finishes booting, it will display the standard OS X installation process.


  1. Log in as the root user.
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Select your language, then click the continue or arrow button. Don't worry; we won't actually install anything. We just need to get to the next step in the installation process, where the Apple menu bar is populated with menus. In the Reset Password window that opens, select the drive that contains your home folder; this is usually your Mac's startup drive.

The process may take a while, depending on the size of the home folder. Eventually, the Reset button will change to say Done. The application that is used to reset passwords and user account permissions is still present, however; you just have to start the app using Terminal. Start by booting from the Recovery HD partition.

Changing File Permissions on Mac OS X and FTP file server

Keep holding the two keys until you see the Recovery HD desktop appear. You will see the OS X Utilities window open on your desktop, with various options available in its window. You can ignore this window; there's nothing we need to do with it.

Make sure the Reset Password window is the frontmost window. Once you quit the Reset Password app, be sure to quit the Terminal app by selecting Quit Terminal from the Terminal menu. That's all there is to resetting your user account's file permissions back to the correct default settings.

Mac Troubleshooting - Reset User Account Permissions

If you no longer have permissions to files or folders, change the permissions back. Sometimes, a whole hard disk can become inaccessible or locked and often, BatChmod can unlock those too! If you moved a folder or files from another machine or another user on your machine, BatChmod can help set you up as their rightful owner. Keep your Trash clean Ah the beauty of a nice clean Trashcan on your Desktop. How annoying when you cannot empty it because some files are thought to be in use by the Finder!

Quick and simple and you will never see those files again.