file_contexts.homedirs - Linux


file_contexts.homedirs is a utility used to define the security contexts for home directories on a Linux system. It populates the SELinux file context database with the proper contexts for user home directories.


file_contexts.homedirs [options] [directory]


  • -d, –domain : Specify the SELinux domain to assign to the home directories.
  • -u, –user : Specify the username to assign to the home directories. If not provided, the username of the current user is used.
  • -n, –nonrecursive: Do not recursively update home directories within subdirectories.
  • -v, –verbose: Enable verbose output, showing the changes made to the file context database.
  • -h, –help: Display help information.


Simple Usage

Assign the user_home_t SELinux domain to all home directories:

file_contexts.homedirs /home

Recursive Update

Recursively update the file context database for all home directories, including subdirectories:

file_contexts.homedirs -r /home

Specify User and Domain

Assign the my_domain_t SELinux domain to the home directory of the user alice:

file_contexts.homedirs -d my_domain_t -u alice /home

Common Issues

  • Permission denied: Ensure that the user running the command has sufficient privileges to modify the file context database.
  • Directory not found: Verify that the specified directory exists and is accessible.
  • Invalid SELinux context: Ensure that the specified SELinux domain is valid and exists on the system.


file_contexts.homedirs can be integrated with other commands and tools to automate SELinux security management. For example:

find /home -type d -user alice | file_contexts.homedirs -d my_domain_t -v

Related Commands

  • semanage fcontext: Manage SELinux file contexts.
  • restorecon: Restore SELinux file contexts for files and directories.