acl_error - Linux


acl_error is a tool designed to help users troubleshoot and debug file permission issues by showing the Access Control Lists (ACLs) of a file or directory and any errors associated with them. It provides detailed information about permission conflicts, inheritance problems, and other irregularities that can arise with file permissions on Linux systems.


acl_error [options] <file>...


  • -v, –verbose: Enable verbose output, displaying all available ACL information and error messages.
  • -f, –force: Force ACL printing even if the user does not have sufficient permissions to read them.
  • -h, –help: Display help and usage information.
  • -V, –version: Print the tool’s version number.


Display ACLs and errors for a file

acl_error /path/to/file

Force ACL printing with verbose output

acl_error -vf /path/to/file

Check ACLs for multiple files

acl_error /path/to/file1 /path/to/file2 /path/to/file3

Common Issues

  • Permission denied: Ensure that the user has sufficient permissions to read the ACLs of the file or directory being checked. Use the -f flag to override this if necessary.
  • ACLs not supported: Some filesystems do not support ACLs. Confirm that the filesystem supports ACLs before using the tool on those files.
  • Inheritance errors: Check for any inheritance issues with ACLs. Ensure that the parent directory has proper ACLs set and that they are correctly inherited by child objects.


acl_error can be integrated with other commands or tools to enhance troubleshooting capabilities:

  • grep: Use grep to filter ACL entries based on specific permissions or flags.
  • diff: Compare ACLs of two files to identify differences and potential problems.
  • find: Search for files and directories with specific ACL properties using find.

Related Commands

  • setfacl: Set file ACLs.
  • getfacl: Get file ACLs.
  • chmod: Modify file permissions.
  • ACL documentation