Ftp user


Is it possible to create a ftp user that has root access to all the other users directory’s? I have a few virtual users that are using my hosting account I can’t get to their directory’s without their user name and password to modify their files and such. they are under my account I should be able to get to their files. I assume I will have to contact support but I thought I mite try here first.


Unless you set it up to facilitate that when you created their user, there is not an easy way for you to avoid this situation on DreamHost.

Why don’t you just log on using their user name and password? That is by far the easiest way for you to manipulate their files at this point.



Actually they’re under their own user account and you not being able to access their files is why unix is so secure. There are ways to setup what you’re after (involves access lists) but they’re not implemented in a ‘pure’ environment. And that’s a good thing! - if someone gained access to your single user account they would have access to every user account ‘under’ you. You certainly don’t want that happening.

You’re the boss, and as rl suggests you can use any account’s info at your discretion.

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I don’t have the user’s password, I could reset it but don’t want to do that. my last web host was a Linux host and I had access to all the users I added to my account. my account had root access and when i logged in with ftp it listed all the domains that where hosted on my account. The other users account where pointed to their domain that was in the list.


I see. Well, for security purposes, you can’t do that on DreamHost unless you planned for it and established appropriate groups, set appropriate permissions, etc. and it is not trivial to set up and/or manage, IMHO.

Was it a “shared” host? I can’t believe you actually had “root access” if it was, as that would be a decidedly insecure arrangement for everyone concerned.

As for listing “all the domains that are hosted on your account”, you can still do that on DreamHost with SFTP if you manipulate the groups and permissions as I’ve indicated above, but that is not a very secure hosting model.

Have you looked at the relevant DH Wiki articles?




I would like to create a dedicated FTP user with access to just one of my subdomains, as recommended in the Joomla! installation manual here: http://help.joomla.org/content/view/1947/302/1/5/

I looked through those wiki articles, but it’s unclear how to go about doing this. I tried creating a unix group and changed the permissions in the subdomain as described, but the FTP user I’m trying to configure keeps winding up back in it’s home folder, not the Joomla! subdomain I’m trying for.

I don’t know if I’m missing something, or messing it up somehow. I follow directions very well, if only I could find the steps to take. Can anyone help?

Any chance someone could explain it here, or maybe add it to the wiki?



It might help to understand what that installation manual section is all about, what the FTP layer/user does, and why it is needed. :wink: Per the opening paragraph of that help screen:

The “short version” of this, for DreamHost users, is that you don’t not need to concern yourself with this at all, or even setup the “FTP layer”. The Joomla FTP layer discussed in that manual section is designed to provide a “workaround” for those on hosts running PHP in safe mode, or other less “elegantly” implemented PHP environments.

On DreamHost, where Joomla! runs under PHP-CGI and suEXEC, the Joomla! program itself has all the same permissions and privileges as your own FTP user, and therefore it can do anything you can do :wink: . This differs from systems where PHP is run as an apache module, which would cause Joomla! to run as the webserver’s user (often “nobody”, but “dhapache” on Dreamhost). What this means to you is that all that “file system manipulation”, the upload and install processes, and the Media manager all do their work as you, so no special user or FTP layer is required at all for any “authorized Users” to use them!

In a sense, while within the Joomla interface, they are all “you” to the system - Joomla! itself manages who can do what by the privileges you assign to a Joomla! user.

In short - you should just ignore this for Joomla running on DreamHost shared servers, because it simply is nott applicable. How’s that for “easy”? :slight_smile:

That is, in fact, how it is supposed to work on Dreamhost, and that is a good thing because it is an important part of the *nix security model and makes for a much safe environment on a shared host.

There is a lot more information about all of that in the DreamHost wiki:


As I mentioned earlier, none of that is needed for Joomla! on DreamHost - all the Joomla! functions will “just work” without an “FTP layer” at all if Joomla is properly installed.



Thank you for the excellent clarification!

Thank you! I wanted to make sure I was setting things up right, and I got stuck on this issue.Had I seen that in the Dreamhost wiki’s Joomla! article, I would have saved myself much time and aggravation.


You are welcome, and I’m sorry you had that frustration!

Joomla! 1.5 is still pretty “new”, and I expect folks will gradually add relevant stuff like that to the wiki as the program become more commonly used, and people begin to discover some of these things. :wink: