Authentication for drive access

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Authentication for drive access

Postby emgy on Mon Jan 18, 2010 8:13 pm

Since I installed Mint 8, I now have to supply my password to access my other drives (eg Windows C: and D: drive).
Is there any way of saving the authentication so that I do not have to keep entering my password?

Also, a problem which started in 2008 with Elyssa is still lingering - when a user logs off, any mounted drive is remaining mounted with the permissions of the user who mounted it. The next user to login cannot access the drive until it is unmounted, then remounted with his own permissions.

Access to my other drives is gradually becoming more painful with each new release. Is this a security feature or a problem?
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Re: Authentication for drive access

Postby viking777 on Tue Jan 19, 2010 5:56 am

Having Auto login enabled sometimes affects things like that, but as you have multiple users I would suspect auto login would not not be appropriate on your machine. If you do have it enabled for any user then disable it.

Is it a security feature - no. If you want my opinion (read guess!) it is due to another new feature being adopted before it is ready. This one is called policykit. What can you do about it? Nothing that I know of. The user interface with policykit is in your control panel under System/Authorisations but it is virtually empty so there is hardly anything you can do with it unless you understand how to rewrite its configuration files (xml probably - I haven't checked). You could have a play around in Authorisations and see it you can come up with anything but I couldn't advise you directly on that.

The point of these new features is not improved security, but ironically for you, ease of use! The developers have attempted to automate the handling of authorisation policies (which is why the user interface is empty). They have in many cases been successful in this aim - for example, I have no authorisation errors at all, and I think most people will say the same. But where the automation has broken down as with yourself, the program writers have left very little scope for users to sort out the problems themselves. The classic example of this is grub2 with which I do have problems, and as with policykit the available means to solve them are totally inadequate and unacceptable.

To me it is sad that in the rush to make Linux easier they are, for some, making it more difficult.
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Re: Authentication for drive access

Postby altair4 on Tue Jan 19, 2010 8:10 am

I believe the answer to both of your problems is to auto mount your windows partitions at boot. There is no better HowTo on that subject than this one: Auto Mount Partitions on Boot: viewtopic.php?f=42&t=22093

If we take one of Fred's examples on how to automount an NTFS partition we can see how this will resolve your problem.
/dev/sdxx /media/Windows ntfs defaults,umask=007,gid=46 0 0


The umask=007 means this:

The first digit represents the owner which in this case is root. The value is 0 which means root will have read / write access.
The second digit represents a group of users. The value is also 0, so a group will be able to read / write
The third digit represents everyone else and it's value is 7 which means no access.

The gid=46 means this:

The gid represents the "Group ID" and the value is 46 which represents the plugdev group. All local users are members of the plugdev group. So combined with the umask value above all local users will have read /write access.

So when you boot, the /dev/sdxx partition in this example will automatically show up at /media/Windows without you being prompted for a password. It will allow all local users to read and write to that mount point. And it will be unmounted automatically when you shut down your computer.
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Re: Authentication for drive access

Postby Alpha-Geek on Tue Jan 19, 2010 9:16 am

The suggestion by Recent-Convert in this post, viewtopic.php?f=90&t=39797 , worked well for me. It allows "no-password access" to any drives or partitions on your computer.
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