I have a weird issue with folder permissions on my ubuntu server.

I have 2 users which need access to nginx logs, www-data (nginx) and dd-agent (datadog, a logging service).

I created a group logusers and added both users to that group, then I changed permissions as follows:

sudo chown -R dd-agent:logusers /var/log/nginx/

I can see the following for ls -l:

drwxr-xr-x 2 dd-agent logusers 4096 May 29 06:25 nginx

Then I check both the status of the dd-service and nginx-service, and both are fine, but after a couple of hours, datadog reports a permission denied error for opening a file inside /var/log/nginx/.

How can I make sure both users have proper access? Why does this change over time?

--Edit: Restarting the datadog-agent service and checking its status again shows no permission errors. This is weird.

  • 2
    has that file been newly created, probably with different rights? have you checked ls -la /var/log/nginx/specific-file – AlexOnLinux May 29 at 7:18
  • I don't understand why you create a new group to do that. Why don't you add the users to the www-data and dd-agent groups? – mook765 May 29 at 7:20
  • 1
    @AlexOnLinux Indeed is has been. -rw-r----- 1 dd-agent logusers 118883 May 29 09:25 access.log – ffritz May 29 at 7:28
  • Also remind : newly created files in /var/log/nginx/ (after the chown-command) will not be associated with the grouplogusers. – mook765 May 29 at 7:28
  • @mook765 So sudo usermod -a -G www-data dd-agent and sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/log/nginx/ should do it right? – ffritz May 29 at 9:01

if you want your new created files to be created as the group you specified to the folder you could do the following

sudo chmod g+s /var/log/nginx/

this will set the SGID-Bit ( Set Group ID ) to the folder with the result that every new created file inside that folder will inherit the group of the folder.

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