File permission hassles on Vista

Joe Krahn
Sun Nov 4 16:45:00 GMT 2007

I have been running Cygwin on Vista. The way that file attributes are 
handled are causing problems. Cygwin appears to add attributes for 
'Everyone' and a 'None' user to handle world and group POSIX attributes. 
On Vista, these attributes give the file a 'shared' property, which adds 
a shared file overlay on the GUI icons. If you try to manipulate files 
from the Windows GUI, things become VERY slow. It can take minutes just 
to move just a few files. It seems that the system is trying to keep 
track of shared files, and gets confused about files made shared by 
Cygwin. Maybe it is the indexing service?

I am guessing that Cygwin developers just are not using Vista yet, 
because I have seen very little discussion of this problem. Until this 
problem is resolved, an easy fix might be to avoid adding the extra 
attributes groups as long as they have no permissions. A Vista user can 
set umask to 077, and avoid making those attribute groups.

Another quick work-around would be to have a command-line tool to strip 
out the extra permission attributes. Is there a tool in cygwin that can 
manipulate win32 file attributes? I thought maybe 'chatter' would do it, 
but those attributes are apparently independent of Win32 attributes. If 
Cygwin doesn't have anything like this, I think it would be a good Win32 
utility to include (i.e. sort of like regtool).

Joe Krahn

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