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All right... I have my server set up and I have 4 Joomla! sites residing in /var/www/. Each site directory and the files underneath it are all root:www-pub according to this post:

What's the best way of handling permissions for apache2's user www-data in /var/www?

My user, cdog, is part of the www-pub, as directed by the above post and, after more research, umask is set up properly.

The issue is that when I login to the Joomla! back end... all of the directories are unwritable, meaning I cannot update configuration files, edit templates or even install/update plugins/extensions, etc.

Joomla! was not installed into these directories, the directories were moved (cloned via git) to the server and the subsequent working of the directories (as described in the link above) was performed.

The rights for all directories and files is as follows (i only used a few examples):

administrator rwxrwsr-x root:www-pub
cache         rwxrwsr-x root:www-pub
images        rwxrwsr-x root:www-pub
modules       rwxrwsr-x root:www-pub
tmp           rwxrwsr-x root:www-pub
index.php     rw-rw-r-- root:www-pub

What is the cause of my directories/files not being accessible by the Joomla back end Administrator?

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Is www-data a member of www-pub? Did you restart Apache after changing the group membership? – mgorven Jul 12 '12 at 18:17
That'll do it! Thanks! Answer it, and i'll mark it so... – westexasman Jul 12 '12 at 18:22
up vote 1 down vote accepted

The www-data user which Apache runs as needs to be a member of the www-pub group. You probably need to restart Apache after changing the group membership.

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