9 Replies Latest reply: Feb 14, 2014 5:42 AM by MacFail
Michel Rainville Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

What permissions are recommended for a user account in OS X Lion, so full system automatic backups will work when I am logged in as a user, not administrator?

 

Would you consider adding some permissions to the system, such as "read/write own backups" or "read/delete any backups?"

 

 

Backup while logged in with my user account failed repeatedly (This used to work, and I do not generally fiddle with permissions, except to run "Repair permissions" about monthly). Authenticating as administrator had no effect, nor did restarting as administrator and logging in as user for backup via time machine on OSX Lion. I also powered off the external La Cie 1TB drive, which has 446.85 GB available. There was a read-only CD-ROM in the drive.

The main hard drive is encrypted.

 

 

Log messages

 

12-02-13 9:20:34.873 PM com.apple.backupd: Backup failed with error: The target volume is read-only.

12-02-13 9:21:48.264 PM com.apple.backupd: Starting standard backup

12-02-13 9:21:48.278 PM com.apple.backupd: Backing up to: /Volumes/External Drive/Backups.backupdb

12-02-13 9:21:48.284 PM com.apple.backupd: The target volume is read-only.

12-02-13 9:21:48.287 PM com.apple.backupd: Error: (30) setxattr for key:com.apple.backupd.HostUUID path:/Volumes/External Drive/Backups.backupdb/Michel G. Rainville’s iMac size:37

12-02-13 9:21:58.323 PM com.apple.backupd: Backup failed with error: The target volume is read-only.


iMac (24-inch), Mac OS X (10.7.3)
  • Shootist007 Level 6 Level 6 (16,645 points)

    I see no reason to have a separate user account on a Mac. They don't get viruses, or so they say, and to install any software of any type/kind you have to type in your Admin password.

     

    IMHO it is just a waist of disk space and effort.

     

    If you do regular TM backups or use somethig like CCC you can always go back in time if you have a problem

     

    The only reason, IMHO, to have a standard user account is for someone that you don't want to let them make changes to the system.

  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (147,030 points)

    The backup failure has nothing to do with your user account. The destination volume is locked, mounted read-only, or in the wrong format. Select its icon in the Finder and open the Info window. What's the format? Is it locked?

  • Michel Rainville Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    In the olden days, before Intel based Macs, it was fun to watch Intel coded viruses appearing harmlessly on the desktop, to be deleted at will. For many years, I did use an administrator account exclusively, with no encryption on the hard drive. Now, things are not so simple.

     

    I regret to inform you that in the transition from Leopard to Snow Leopard, I delayed in upgrading from Intego X5 to X6 and was infected, with altered files in both Safari, FireFox and Java, which I require as I use it in my work. I routinely see warnings from my antivirus software from website attacks. I took to rteinstalling both Safari and Firefox frequently and routinely, if they ever showed any deviation from normal operation.

     

    I have a very large hard drive, so the disk space is of no concern. Going back in time is not the problem; it's about how far back to go, to find a clean system, and deciding which files are safe to use.

     

    The real issue is why the permissions appear to work differently than they did in Snow Leopard, or when I first installed Lion. The other issue is being able to let full system backups and user account backups run transparently, even from a user account, including being able to delete old backups.

     

    If my user account is hijacked in a drive by malware attack, the damage is limited. If I am running an administrator account, and they attack with a trojan, then, they can do whatever they like with my computer.

     

    Message was edited by: Michel Rainville

  • Michel Rainville Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    The backup failure has nothing to do with your user account.

    I think this is exactly the problem:

    1. Why is the user account no longer able to do its own backups, as it used to?
    2. What specific permission do I need to apply in the Get Info panel to correct the problem?
    3. How to I prevent the loss of backup capability on the user account? How do I fix this loss?

     

    The destination volume is locked, mounted read-only, or in the wrong format.

    1. The backups are working fine from the administrator account. They are running again from the user account, after I restarted, updated antivirus (no malware found), logged into the encryped drive, and ran backup from administrator. (Could it be that changed files on the admin account prevent the user account from running  full backup?)
    2. I did not change the permissions or format.
    3. I am able to access and re-access the drive, which is only a few years old. (The iMac drive is less than a year old).
    4. I have had to authenticate as the admin user to run automatic backups in the past.
    5. The Permissions on info are locked and look the same as before, read only.

     

     

     

    The real issue is why the permissions seem (uncertain on this, now) to work differently than they did in Snow Leopard, or when I first installed Lion. The other issue is being able to let full system backups and user account backups run transparently, even from a user account, including being able to delete old backups. (from reply above)

    Thanks for taking the time and trouble to reply; it has helped clarify my understanding of the problem.

  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (147,030 points)

    Please post a screenshot of the Info window, showing the Sharing & Permissions section.

  • Michel Rainville Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    SharedPermission.png

    The administrator account is grayed out; logged in account is the user account. The backup was running as I did this.

     

    My theory:

     

    When logged in as admin, I updated virus signatures and used the browser while waiting. Some files on the admin account needed backing up, but I logged out and back in as just a user, without adequate permission to backup admin files. Still uncertain,  but these settings must be OK, or the backup would not be running.

     

    Is there a system permission problem somewhere?

  • thomas_r. Level 7 Level 7 (29,580 points)

    I regret to inform you that in the transition from Leopard to Snow Leopard, I delayed in upgrading from Intego X5 to X6 and was infected

     

    Infected with what?  In my experience, people using AV software on a Mac often believe they are infected because the AV software finds Windows malware or phishing e-mails or something similar.  It's very uncommon for Mac users to be infected with malware, though it can happen.  It sounds like you have allowed a bit of paranoia on this topic to take over your thinking a bit.  See my Mac Malware Guide for some more concrete information.  (Note that my pages contain links to other pages that promote my services, and this should not be taken as an endorsement of my services by Apple.)

     

    As to your backup problems, see:

     

    http://pondini.org/TM/Troubleshooting.html

     

    My guess, based on your descriptions, would be that your backup has somehow become corrupted.  But read through Pondini's troubleshooting guide yourself, as I'm still a little unclear on your problem.

  • Linc Davis Level 10 Level 10 (147,030 points)

    Please read this whole message before doing anything.

     

    This procedure is a diagnostic test. It’s unlikely to solve your problem. Don’t be disappointed when you find that nothing has changed after you complete it.

     

    The purpose of this exercise is to determine whether the problem is caused by third-party system modifications that load automatically at startup or login. Disconnect all wired peripherals except those needed for the test, and remove all aftermarket expansion cards. Boot in safe mode and log in to the account with the problem. The instructions provided by Apple are as follows:

     

    • Be sure your Mac is shut down.
    • Press the power button.
    • Immediately after you hear the startup tone, hold the Shift key. The Shift key should be held as soon as possible after the startup tone, but not before the tone.
    • Release the Shift key when you see the gray Apple icon and the progress indicator (looks like a spinning gear).

     

    Safe mode is much slower to boot and run than normal, and some things won’t work at all, including wireless networking on some Macs.

     

    The login screen appears even if you usually log in automatically. You must know your login password in order to log in. If you’ve forgotten the password, you will need to reset it before you begin.

     

    Test while in safe mode. Same problem(s)?

     

    After testing, reboot as usual (i.e., not in safe mode.)

  • MacFail Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Sorry to gravedig, but did you get anywhere with this Michel?

     

    Thanks