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Thread: What does each user group mean?

  1. #1
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    Default What does each user group mean?

    Hi everyone. I wonder if there is any explanation availabale on the web what does each group stand for. I mean the groups you define when editing user in user management in yast. I did a lot of googling but no success. Any help much appreciated.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: What does each user group mean?

    Those groups affect the user's rights on filesystem objects as specified by the group bits, the middle triplet on a ls -l listing. The first triplet is for owner and the third triplet is for world.

    Generally on SUSE systems, users will by default be assigned to a primary group of "users", specified in /etc/passwd, and belong to secondary groups also, specified in /etc/group. Typically users are in dialout, audio, and video so that they can use such devices. And if you have VirtualBox installed, then VirtuaBox users have to be in the vboxusers group.

    You can also create additional groups for a subset of users to share with each other, say you might want managers only to be able share files but not with other users. So you would create a new group called managers, put the managers in it, and then chgrp the relevant files and directories so that their group is managers. Then non-managers will be permitted or denied depending on the world bits.

    You can pretty much leave things alone in that part of YaST until you need such advanced techniques. Don't assign users willy-nilly to the system groups. There is no need to do that and you may compromise security if you don't know what you are doing.

    There are lots of tutorials and books on the Unix/Linux permission system. For example

    File system permissions - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

  3. #3
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    Default Re: What does each user group mean?

    Thanks ken_yap, I see it is far more complicated than I though , thanks for your detailed explanation

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