sshd.log /var/empty must be owned by root and not group or world-writable.

Brian Dessent
Mon Feb 18 03:56:00 GMT 2008

David Christensen wrote:

> /var/empty must be owned by root and not group or world-writable.
> 11. Change owner of /var/empty:
> 20080217-144416 Administrator@a64x23800p /var
> $ chown root empty/
> chown: invalid user: `root'
> 12.  STFW.  root is not a valid user name.  Make an educated guess and
> try again:

On Cygwin, root is a group (an alias to the 'Administrators' group) not
a user.  So you can "chgrp root" but not "chown root".  But that doesn't
matter, as really what the above error is saying is that the directory
should be owned by the user that is running the ssh daemon, which on
most unix systems is root but on Cygwin is SYSTEM since it's a service. 
So, the error is a little misleading but it's because it's a generic
message from OpenSSH.

> I don't know how to put the above fixes (chmod, chown) into Cygwin;
> perhaps the openssh maintainer can do so.

There's nothing to fix, this is already performed by ssh-host-config:

    # Now check if sshd has been successfully installed.  This allows to
    # set the ownership of the affected files correctly.
    if cygrunsrv -Q sshd > /dev/null 2>&1
      if [ $_nt2003 -gt 0 -a "${sshd_server_in_sam}" = "yes" ]
      chown "${_user}" ${SYSCONFDIR}/ssh*
      chown "${_user}".544 ${LOCALSTATEDIR}/empty
      chown "${_user}".544 ${LOCALSTATEDIR}/log/lastlog
      if [ -f ${LOCALSTATEDIR}/log/sshd.log ]
        chown "${_user}".544 ${LOCALSTATEDIR}/log/sshd.log

I don't know why running ssh-host-config didn't work, you'd probably
have to debug that a little more to find out.


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