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Re: Create backup of system-connections on a USB stick

On Sat, 31 May 2014 22:50:04 -0700 (PDT)
Horatio Leragon <hleragon@yahoo.com> wrote:

> ________________________________
>  From: Ralf Mardorf <ralf.mardorf@alice-dsl.net>
> To: debian-user@lists.debian.org 
> Sent: Sunday, June 1, 2014 1:24 PM
> Subject: Re: Create backup of system-connections on a USB stick
> > PS: Also read
> > man chown
> > man chmod
> I have read those man pages whose contents are only useful to those
> with a background in IT and computer science.
> What I see in them are just heaps of formulae which I do not know how
> to apply.
> What I need are examples of how to use those formulae. Unfortunately
> man pages are lacking in them.

Man pages are quite terse, and are intended mainly as reminders for
people who basically know the principles but have forgotten the exact
syntax and options. If you have Internet access, and need to know
something new, then a search with the word 'tutorial' added will be
more useful.

Specifically, in the case you ask about, you can forget about changing
file permissions for large numbers of files, and make sure that
whatever backup method you use preserves the original permissions, even
on a filesystem which doesn't have them. Many programs check the
permissions of security-sensitive configuration files and will not run
if they are incorrect.

No offence intended, but if you do anything more than email and
web-surfing, you will need to know about file permissions, ownership
and how to obtain root privileges by means of su, sudo or other means
built into your GUI environment (you may find 'File Manager As Root' or
'..Super User' or similar in your menus).

This isn't a Linux thing, every version of Windows except 3, 95, 98 and
Millennium has used file permissions, though they are hidden in the
domestic versions and are only accessible in Safe Mode. Most USB sticks
are pre-formatted with one of the old FAT filing systems for
compatibility, and FAT doesn't do permissions, so Windows users
sometimes have the same troubles. Windows has a much more complex set
of user permissions and file access controls than the basic Unix system,
but domestic users generally don't see that, and many of them run with
administrator privileges all the time.

To answer another question, Debian and its derivatives use the Apt
package management system, and have their own policies about the
locations of certain types of file. Pretty much everything else about
Debian is the same or extremely similar to almost any other Linux
distribution, so you don't generally need to look for Debian-specific
information. Certainly the basics of users and permissions will apply
to any distribution that hasn't had extra access control features
deliberately added, as some business-oriented distributions might have.
What you do need to be careful about is that the information is fairly
recent, as Linux and Windows have both evolved considerably over time,
and much Internet information is now either only partly correct or
completely wrong.


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