The other day, I went to go use the
FileSystemRights enum and quickly got confused with all the different kinds of windows file permissions - I'm pretty sure I'm not alone. Some of the enums only have a single permission flag while others contain multiple flags. I hope this short reference will help understand the breakdown.
Enumerating the Enum
To generate a list of flags that make up
FileSystemRights, the following was used:
foreach (var f in Enum.GetValues(typeof(FileSystemRights)))
Console.WriteLine(f.ToString().PadLeft(28) + Convert.ToString((int)f, 2).PadLeft(32, '0'));
Some values appear to be displayed twice but that is a side effect of the generating code. The reason is because some items have the same bitflag and when ToString() looks them up it returns the first match. e.g.
ReadDataListDirectory are both listed with the value 1. This is cleaned up in the next table as "ReadDataListDirectory/ReadData".
Cleaning up the table
Here is a beautified version of the above: (Removed empty columns, rearranged, combined duplicates, added headers, and highlighted for optimal viewing.)
From the above table, we can see that there are individual distinct permissions (bottom 13 rows), and sets of permissions (top 5 rows).
Summarizing the Sets
Here are all the 17 different enumerations for
FileSystemRights. On the left are the distinct values and on the right are friendly multi-flag sets.
Write contain an independent set of permissions - nothing is related.
ReadAndExecute is the same as
Read but with Execute as well.
Modify basically contains
Delete. And finally there is
FullControl, which has everything.
FullControl is like
Modify but also adds DeleteSubdirectoriesAndFiles +
TakeOwership + [one more unknown bit].
For most needs, the multi-flag sets (
FullControl) will be all that is needed. However, for more advanced needs, flags can be OR-ed together. (e.g.
Points of Interest
- The permissions match up with Windows NTFS - to be expected I guess. There are 14 distinct flags in
FileSystemRights ([full] not shown) and in explorer's permissions there are 14 as well. Furthermore, with the exception of Special Permissions, there are also the same 5 permission sets.
FullControl has one additional flag set with no matching individual flag. (see diagram 2)
Ryan White is an IT Coordinator, currently living in Pleasanton, California.
He earned his B.S. in Computer Science at California State University East Bay in 2012. Ryan has been writing lines of code since the age of 7 and continues to enjoy programming in his free time.
You can contact Ryan at s u n s e t q u e s t -A-T- h o t m a i l DOT com if you have any questions he can help out with.