On my production server, each time I try to change or upload a user photo I get the "an unknown error occurred" message. If I check the logs, the error says it couldn't delete the folder of the userphotos because it is not writable.

Now I checked the settings and everything is set to 755, the same as the assets folder where I have no problems uploading. The only way I got the userphotos to work is to set the permission on the folder to 777, but that's not the best solution security-wise.

So why isn't the userphotos folder writeable but the assets folder is?

  • What user:group owns the userphotos folder and what user:group is your web server running as?
    – Brad Bell
    Commented Sep 29, 2016 at 17:05
  • userphotos folder owned by clientname:clientname and webserver as 'www-data:www-data Commented Oct 12, 2016 at 9:50
  • chown -R www-data:www-data userphotos?
    – Brad Bell
    Commented Oct 12, 2016 at 18:25
  • Yeah that did the trick. Thanks for helping out. :-) Commented Oct 13, 2016 at 11:32

1 Answer 1


Changing the userphotos folder's owner to be the same as the user:group Apache was running as solved the issue. i.e.

chown -R www-data:www-data userphotos

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