Ubuntu Terminal: How to Make a Folder Writable

It is not often that you need to force a folder in Ubuntu to be writable, usually you only sit with this sort of issue when you want to create a space on your web server for users to upload something to or some other similar reason. Anyway, luckily it is a simple matter to make a folder writable via an Ubuntu terminal instance, making use of the classic chmod functionality.

In practice, to make a folder like /home/uploads writable to all, run:

chmod 777 /home/uploads

The value of 7 indicates read, write and execute permissions, with the first 7 standing for the owner, the second for the group and the final one for everyone else.

And that should pretty much do it, though remember a folder with such open permissions is a pretty risky little beast to have lying around.


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Craig Lotter is an established web developer and application programmer, with strong creative urges (which keep bursting out at the most inopportune moments) and a seemingly insatiable need to love all things animated. Living in the beautiful coastal town of Gordon's Bay in South Africa, he games, develops, takes in animated fare, trains under the Funakoshi karate style and for the most part, simply enjoys life with his amazing wife and daughter. Oh, and he draws ever now and then too.

  • Shairozan

    This command does more than make a directory writable. 777 Means it is Readable, Writable and Executable by any user and this is ill-advise for any actual implementation. The appropriate way to make a file writable is as follows:

    chmod ug+w filename

    This makes the filename writable for the owning user and its group. You could also do

    chmod o+w filename

    But this makes it writable to all other users, which would be the same as the 777. I would also look into what the octal references (numbers, ie 777, 620) mean.