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I'm trying to get a small folder (/test) with a couple small text files to a folder that I don't have write permissions for. I'm the sole user on this account and I don't know why I wouldn't have access.

My first attempt was to use the gui to create a folder but it is not a selectable option when I right click. When I look at the permissions for the folder I want to place my new folder it it the root's and in the root group.

I then tried writing the folder in the terminal which worked.

sudo mkdir /opt/shiny-server/test

So I tried writing the files to the folder but it seems there are many ways to do this and I am confused on what to do. Assume I want to write a very simple text file that might have quotes, less than symbols and other characters in it.

Then I thought the easiest solution might be to just move a directory over using the command line.

sudo mv /Home/Documents/test opt/shiny-server/

But there is "no such directory" for test folder even though I can see it in the gui.

So this is a call for help to learn ubuntu...

  1. I want to know how can I change the permission on this folder to write files and folders.
  2. What is the best way to write text file in a single instance in terminal using a cut paste approach?
  3. What is wrong with my method for trying to move folders?

Thanks! Working with 12.04 here.

share|improve this question
Hi and welcome to the site. Please don't post multiple queries as a single question, break them up into separate ones. The not found issue is because you used opt/shiny-server instead of /opt/shiny-server. The rest are to broad to answer, they will depend on your particular use scenario. As a general rule however, you should not touch anything in /opt unless you know what you're doing. If you want to play with things, do it in your home directory. – terdon Mar 31 '14 at 19:19
what is /Home/Documents? did you mean /home/$USER/Documents? – Rinzwind Mar 31 '14 at 19:20
up vote 4 down vote accepted

In your mv command you are using a relative path for opt/shiny-server/ so this will only work if you current directory has opt as a subdirectory. To ensure that this isn't the issue use a full path /opt/shiny-server/.

To change permission of /opt/shiny-server/test/ use sudo chmod 777 /opt/shiny-server/test This opens up the permissions for everyone.

A better solution is to change the permission to give You more access sudo chown <username>:<username> /opt/shiny-server/test/

To work with files with strange characters in the name, wrap the filename in quotes, and escape single and double quote within the name "this<>isn\'t aNICE"

share|improve this answer
good. thank you very much. – cylondude Mar 31 '14 at 19:59

Your problem is the difference between absolute and relative path. So opt/shiny-server/ is not the same as /opt/shiny-server/ ; the first starts in the current directory and the second starts at root or /

Same problem with test and /test


share|improve this answer
Thanks for the help. – cylondude Mar 31 '14 at 20:00

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