Setting permissions for writing to web servers


If your Rails application needs to support the ability to write to a directory on your web server (for example file uploads from users) you will need to ensure that the permissions for that directory are correctly configured or the write process will fail consistently.

Cloud 66 default Linux users and groups

When Cloud 66 configures your servers, we create two Linux users:

  • nginx which handles the front-end
  • cloud66-user which handles the backend

In order to bridge the (intentional) gap between these users, we place them both in the same Linux group called app_writers - this allows for use cases where a feature needs access to both frontend and backend processes.

The nginx user is limited and cannot be escalated to a super user using the su command. This helps to ensure it cannot be abused by unauthorised public users.

Setting permissions for your writable directory

In order to make a directory writable:

  • You need to ensure the directory owner group is app_writers
  • File permissions must be set to 0660
  • Directory permissions should be set to 0770
  • The process writing to the directory should run as the nginx user

If you're relying on a third-party library or gem, you will need to adjust its configuration to ensure it creates directories with the correct permissions and does not try to run as an exotic or custom user.

Debugging server warnings