Question

Are these webroot permissions correct ?

I’m relatively new to permissions, so I might be doing this wrong, which is why I am checking with you (the reader). I have been wondering how I would have to set my webroot permissions for ‘regular website hosting’ on my VPS. I understand there are tens of ways of doing it, depending on the security one needs, but after reading some tutorials I came to the following situation :

1.) sudo chown -R <myself>:www-data /var/www 2.) sudo chmod -R 755 /var/www 3.) sudo chmod g+s /var/www

1.) I’m setting <myself> and the www-data group as owners of the webroot. 2.) I’m changing the permissions recursively on the webroot so that <myself> has all permissions, NGINX has read & execute and the world also has read & execute. 3.) New files that are added (through SFTP or the shell) will inherit the same configuration of permissions / ownership.

In case of dynamic pages generated by wordpress I will leave it this way but set different permissions for folder where NGINX needs to write, such as ‘upload’ folders, and / or ‘plugin’ folders. etc.

1.) sudo chmod 775 /var/www/… <upload> 2.) sudo chmod 775 /var/www/… <plugin folder>

The question however is : I am doing all this in the right way ? Or am I going about it all wrong ?

Thanks in advance


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I will recommend changing user for /var/www directory to www-data (or the user you are using for nginix). This way nginx has full permissions to files in /var/www.

You can add yourself to the www-data group. And set /var/www permission to 775 or 765. By doing this users in the www-data group will be able to execute (if you use 775) or read/write (if you use 765).