Permissions Question

Malcolm Kay malcolm.kay at
Tue Jan 9 04:19:13 UTC 2007

On Tue, 9 Jan 2007 04:37 am, Jay Chandler wrote:
> Sorry for the dumb question this morning-- caffeine hasn't yet
> worked its wondrous magic upon my person.
> I've got a user who needs to be able to view (read only) the
> aliases file.  We'll grant him root access a few weeks after
> the eventual heat-death of the universe, so how would you all
> go about doing this?
> I've considered allowing him to run a local copy of the
> praliases command, but that chokes on the /etc/mail/aliases
> permissions...

I am confused (or someone is).
On all the FreeBSD systems I have immediate access to the file
/etc/mail/aliases has the default permissions -rw-r--r--, in 
other words is readable by anyone. On the other 
hand /etc/mail/aliases.db is sometimes -rw-r----- and sometimes 
-rw-r--r-- but since it is only an encoded version of aliases 
and additional restrictions would seem useless.

I can imagine some might object to reason setting either of these 
o+r, but this does seem to be the norm.

Perhaps someone else has other views. Or perhaps this is some 
variation when using profix, qmail etc. in place of sendmail.

> To complicate things, the file etc/mail/aliases is actually
> an NFS mounted file shared between all our mx boxes, and he
> only needs to access it from a designated machine.
> Thoughts?  My apologies if this is unclear...

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