chown - change file owner and group
chown [''OPTION''?... :GROUP FILE...
chown [''OPTION''?... --reference=RFILE
This manual page documents the GNU version of chown.
chown changes the user and/or group ownership of each
given file, according to its first non-option argument,
which is interpreted as follows. If only a user name (or
numeric user ID) is given, that user is made the owner of
each given file, and the files' group is not changed. If the
user name is followed by a colon or dot and a group name (or
numeric group ID), with no spaces between them, the group
ownership of the files is changed as well. If a colon or dot
but no group name follows the user name, that user is made
the owner of the files and the group of the files is changed
to that user's login group. If the colon or dot and group
are given, but the user name is omitted, only the group of
the files is changed; in this case, chown performs
the same function as chgrp.
Change the owner and/or group of each FILE to OWNER and/or
like verbose but report only when a change is
affect the referent of each symbolic link, rather than the
symbolic link itself
affect symbolic links instead of any referenced file
(available only on systems that can change the ownership of
change the owner and/or group of each file only if its
current owner and/or group match those specified here.
Either may be omitted, in which case a match is not required
for the omitted attribute.
-f, --silent, --quiet
suppress most error messages
use RFILE's owner and group rather than the specified
operate on files and directories recursively
output a diagnostic for every file processed
display this help and exit
output version information and exit
Owner is unchanged if missing. Group is unchanged if
missing, but changed to login group if implied by a `:'.
OWNER and GROUP may be numeric as well as
Written by David !MacKenzie?.
Report bugs to
Copyright 2001 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
This is free software; see the source for copying
conditions. There is NO warranty; not even for
MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR
The full documentation for chown is maintained as a
Texinfo manual. If the info and chown programs
are properly installed at your site, the
should give you access to the complete manual.