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Brian 11-27-2011 03:07 PM

Resolved: Can't write to external usb drive as normal user despite efforts
 
On Sat 26 Nov 2011 at 16:07:20 -0800, keitho@strucktower.com wrote:

> Thanks to Camaleon, John Lindsay, and Chris Brennan for responding.
>
> This statement put into my /etc/fstab seems to have worked, and auto mount
> as well:
>
> UUID=9419-5112 /usb vfat uid=1000,gid=1000,utf8,umask=0000 0 0
>
> The UUID is obtained via blkid, the uid and gid are for my keith account.

I'd be dissatisfied with myself if I to do this in order to write to a
removable device. The device would only be available to one user, which
may be what you want, but it seems a bit drastic to limit the system use
in such a way. Granted you can replace 'uid=' etc with 'user', but in
that case you had better have 'noauto' there too. And don't repartition
too often, otherwise you will wear out the fstab file.

For every USB stick plugged in you'll be becoming root, getting a UUID
for each partition and editing fstab. It won't make a good impression on
visitors who only want to show you the 10,000 photographs they took on a
recent holiday - especially if the procedure doesn't immediately come to
mind!

You were unable to write to the drive because a partition had been
mounted as root. The usual Debian way of dealing with that situation is
to give users permission to mount removable devices by putting them in
the plugdev group. It's a bit more involved with GNOME+gdm/gdm3 but the
process is hidden from view and designed to be handled automatically.


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Brian 11-27-2011 06:34 PM

Resolved: Can't write to external usb drive as normal user despite efforts
 
On Sun 27 Nov 2011 at 19:49:53 +0200, SM wrote:

> On Sun, Nov 27, 2011 at 04:07:32PM +0000, Brian wrote:
> > The usual Debian way of dealing with that situation is
> > to give users permission to mount removable devices by putting them in
> > the plugdev group.
>
> Or just install pmount. Plug the device in, do "dmesg | tail" to check
> the device and "pmount /dev/sdb1" to mount it in /media/sdb1.
> Everything done as $USER.

You do need to be in group plugdev to use pmount but it is a nifty
utility and the placing of users in groups does, of course, give much
finer control over who can do what than the methods available in mount.

Using GNOME, however, the mounting and display of files on a vfat
partiton just takes place without any fuss, so I can see why pmount
doesn't attract as much attention.


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