I have my theme files at permission of 775, but still the theme editor in the admin says there's no permission. only when i change the permission to 777 it lets me edit. Why is that?

Thank you.


The "user" running your webserver (sometimes _www, sometimes www-data, sometimes "nobody") lacks the permissions to edit these files. You can either change them to be owned by that user or change them to 777. To find out what your web server user is, assuming you're running apache, run ps aux | grep httpd in the command line and in the leftmost column, see what user it's showing!


  • i checked and it shows 'ubuntu'. actually i always thought it was www-data. but either way, the theme files have the owner ubuntu and group www-data. and 775 doesn't work... – Moshe Jan 28 '12 at 15:11
  • If you're running ubuntu, try chowning to www-data which, as far as I've ever seen has always been Ubuntu's default apache user of choice. Also make sure you're doing so recursively and on the top-level directory of what you want to edit. For instance, from the themes directory, run sudo chown -R www-data .. Let me know how you make out! – Matthew Boynes Jan 28 '12 at 15:15

You need to chown the parent directory, recursively with -R flag

chown -R www-data:www-data /directory

and maybe the permissions as well:

chmod -R 774 /directory

Just make sure the FTP user is member of group www-data and it should work like that.

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