acl_set_permset - Linux


acl_set_permset is a command-line tool used to manipulate Access Control Lists (ACLs) on files and directories in Linux. It allows users to efficiently assign or modify permissions for specific users or groups, enabling granular control over file access and security.


acl_set_permset [-f] [-d] [-v] <ACL file> <username/groupname> <permission set> <pathname>


  • -f: Forcefully perform the operation, even if the specified user or group does not exist.
  • -d: Perform the operation on a directory instead of a file.
  • -v: Enable verbose output, displaying detailed information about the ACL changes.


Example 1: Grant read and write permissions to user "alice" on the file "myfile.txt":

acl_set_permset myfile.txt alice "rwx"

Example 2: Revoke all permissions from group "other" on the directory "/home/user":

acl_set_permset -d /home/user other ""

Example 3: Set specific permissions for multiple users and groups on the file "secret.doc":

acl_set_permset secret.doc user1 "r" group2 "rw" user3 "rx"

Common Issues

  • Permission denied: Ensure that you have sufficient permissions to modify the ACLs of the specified file or directory.
  • User or group does not exist: Verify that the specified user or group exists before attempting to set permissions. Use -f to force the operation if necessary.
  • Invalid permission set: The permission set must be a valid combination of characters, such as "rwx", "rw", or "r".


  • chmod: acl_set_permset can be combined with chmod to grant or revoke permissions for the user, group, or other categories.
  • find: Use find to locate files or directories with specific ACL attributes and apply changes using acl_set_permset.

Related Commands

  • acl_get_permset: Retrieves the current permission set for a specified user or group.
  • acl_set_perm: Sets specific permissions for a single user or group.
  • acl: Manages ACLs on files and directories using a command-line interface.