I've got some files which I would like to sync to a linux server. Only problem is it resets the ownership and group to the current user and group.

Unfortunately the options --owner, --group, and --archive are somewhat unworkable because the source is a windows machine. (it's ownership doesn't make sense on the server)

Any way to keep destination ownership unchanged?

Command i'm using (minimal example):

rsync SRC $remote:DEST

3 Answers 3


Try rsync -azvr something somwhere:/location/.


Identify the user and group on the remote end. Example user "user1" and group "user1".

  1. add "--chown user1:user1" to your rsync command

  2. Alternatively if your version of rsync does not support that, on the remote, run "chown -R user1:user1 *" inside the highest folder of your destination file tree and this will recursively reown everything to user1. (WARNING: this syntax also changes everything in the current folder)


Just use --inplace option:

rsync --inplace SRC $remote:DEST

Correctly does not change destination ownership (or permissions), regardless of what the source's are.



This option changes how rsync transfers a file when the file's data needs to be updated: instead of the default method of creating a new copy of the file and moving it into place when it is complete, rsync instead writes the updated data directly to the destination file.

[Warning: May cause issues when changing files that are in-use]

For full details see rsync docs page.

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