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When you attempt to perform a backup to a Common Internet File System (CIFS)-mounted drive, you may receive errors that resemble the following example:

/bin/cp: failed to preserve ownership for `': Permission denied /bin/cp: failed to preserve ownership for `': Permission denied

These permission denied errors may result from missing extended attributes on the CIFS-mounted drive. This document describes how to resolve these permission denied errors.

Resolve the error

To resolve the permission denied errors for the CIFS-mounted drive, perform the following steps: 

  1. Edit the /etc/fstab file so that the CIFS-mounted drive uses the user_xattr option. This will resemble the following example:


    We strongly recommend that you store your CIFS-mounted drive's access credentials in a separate, secure file.

    /dev/mapper/centos_centos--7--clone-root /                       xfs     defaults        1 1
    UUID=01c6e08e-bbd1-4046-af48-beaf233746d4 /boot                   xfs     defaults        1 2
    /dev/mapper/centos_centos--7--clone-swap swap                    swap    defaults        0 0
    // /user_xattr cifs user,uid=500,rw,suid, credentials=/root/.cifs 0 0


    In this example, line 4 displays the CIFS-mounted drive entry.

    • The local user owns the mounted files.
    • The CIFS drive's access credentials reside in the /root/.cifs file.
  2. Run the remount mount command to remount the CIFS-mounted drive.
  3. Run the lsattr /CIFS_mount command to add the extended attributes.


    The mount does not support extended attributes if the lsattr /CIFS_mount command returns the following error:

    |Error means not available: lsattr: Inappropriate ioctl for device While reading flags on ...|

    A mount that does not support extended attributes will not function with cPanel & WHM backups.

For more information about CIFS, read our Backup Configuration documentation.

Additional documentation