Updated: 10/30/2017 by Computer Hope

privilegesAlternatively referred to as rights and privileges, permissions are access details given by users or network administrators that define access rights to files on a network. For example, a person who works for a company's customer service department may be privileged to view a customer's information otherwise blocked to other employees.

Example privilege rights

All - All rights granted.
Execute - The right to execute a file or a file within that directory.
Read - The right to read a file.
Write - The right to write to a file.

Often these above rights can be assigned or removed to a single user or a group of users.

How to see and change the file attributes and permissions

  • To see or change the attributes in MS-DOS use the attrib command.
  • If you want to see the ACLs or permissions in MS-DOS use the cacls command.
  • To see or change permissions in Linux and Unix use the chmod command.

Tip: In Windows you can view the attributes and permissions of a file by right-clicking the file and clicking Properties. Within the Properties window you can find the attributes at the bottom of the General tab and the permissions under the Security tab.

How do I get permissions?

In a network environment such as a business or school permissions are given by a system or network administrator. In a home or small office with no administrator rights are given by any account that has administrator rights.

Access, ACE, ACL, Administrator rights, Attributes, Hidden, Network terms, Root, Security terms