Re: Newbie - permision denied error

D. Cooper Stevenson (
Thu, 11 Feb 1999 23:07:03 -0800 wrote:

> Hi,
> I'm new to Linux and AfterStep (but not to NeXTStep,NT,MAC etc,)
> I've installed SuSE 5.2 and X11, it's running fine and I can use FVWM and
> KDE quite happily.
> However I've always belived NeXTSTEP was the best interface I've ever used
> and naturally I want to install it on my new Linux box.
> So, i've Gunzipped it and I now have a directory with the configure and
> install scripts there.
> When I run ./configure or ./install.script I get a "Permission Denied"
> every time. I've logged in a root and get the same thing.
> Any help would be great.
> mark
> --
>    WWW:
>    FTP:
>    MAIL:

I'm not clear as to whether it is the actual "configure" and "install.script"
files that are giving you the error, or a directory or file "configure" or
"install.script" is trying to access. I will assume that it is the actual
"configure" and "install.script" giving you the problem.

in the directory that contains "configure," try this command as root:

chmod o+x ./configure

Do the same to install.script:

chmod o+x ./install.script

Here's how it works:

Unix takes a different (and better, in my opinion) approach to file and
directory access. With a Unix system, you have three basic classes of users:
User, Group, and Others. Not to confuse the issue, but a "user" as defined in
Unix does not necessarily have to be a human being; the "user" can be a
deamon or a user set up exclusively to help a program to it's job. I'm not
telling you this to be cute; I want to see you avoid confusion when you see a
user called "Deamon."

A user has exactly one member. A group can have any number of members more
than one (group >= 1). The "others" class of user is a class set aside by
Unix to describe all users of a system.

For example, suppose you have a user named Frank. Frank is an accountant. As
such, Frank needs access to his "home" directory. This is his little area on
your server for storing his personal stuff; everyone should have some
privacy. Frank also needs to be apart of the "accounting" group. This allows
Frank to share files with the other accountants. Of course, Frank is a member
of the "others" group by default simply by virtue of being a user on your
server. Frank, like most other accountants, do a wide variety of other things
too, like bitch that his monitor is to small, suck up large amounts of server
recources and drones on at length about his 401K plan. But I regress...

The nitty gritty:

The commands I showed you above are part of a small group (not to be confused
with a user group) of commands meant to handle user access rights. They are:
"chmod, " "chgrp, " and "chown." With these commands, I can change the mode
of a file, change the group the file belongs to, and change the owner of the
file, respectively.

In this case, I changed the mode of the file so that everyone on the system
(the 'o' part-short for others) can execute the file. Said another way:
"Change the mode of the file so that 'others' now have the added priviledge
of running the configure command."

The "./" in front of the configure just means "current directory," i.e.
"(current directory)configure."

When we say "change the mode" we really mean "is it executable or not?' This
is how *nix (they write it that way so that you can read it as "Unix, "
"Linux, "or other Unix varient) gets by without having to designate a special
extention for an executable file. This adds greatly to the flexibility of the
operating system. That why you can type "/etc/ppp/ppp-on" and watch your
modem execute your Internet script. Otherwise, we'd be stuck with
"/etc/ppp/ppp-on.exe." As an original DOS technician, I never really thought
aspect of DOS was lame until I began my "Linux adventure." Anyway, when
I "+x," I make it executable.

If you ask me too, I will do a quick write up on "chgrp" and "chown." Suffice
it to say for now that you won't need these commands to get your configure
script running.

One last tip: it may be the files that these scripts are trying to access. If
that turns out to be the case, re-read the error message, figure out what
file the script is trying to access and type:

chmod o+x [filename]

Caution: be carefull with the ol' chmod o+x bit; your giving executable
privileges to everyone on the system. Here's a potentially bad situation as
an example:

chmod o+x halt

Congratulations, you have just granted every user the opportunity to shut
down your server at any time.

I hope this has helped.