puppet-lint no symbolic file modes check

Extends puppet-lint to ensure all file resource modes are defined as octal values and not symbolic ones.

While symbolic modes can be more flexible than numeric modes they allow you to become less absolute about the permissions a file will end up with. mode => 'ug+w' for example will set the user and group write bits, without affecting any other bits, leaving you unable to determine the files final permissions from just reading the puppet code.

# a good, octal mode.
class octal_file_mode {
  file { '/tmp/octal-mode':
    mode => '0600',

# A bad, symbolic mode.
class symbolic_file_mode {
  file { '/tmp/symbolic-mode':
    mode => 'ug=rw,o=rx',


To use this plugin add the following line to your Gemfile

gem 'puppet-lint-no_symbolic_file_modes-check'

and then run bundle install.


This plugin provides a new check to puppet-lint.

mode should be a 4 digit octal value, not a symbolic mode


The code for this was heavily borrowed/stolen from the original, including in puppet-lint, file mode check written by @rodjek

Other puppet-lint plugins

You can find a list of my puppet-lint plugins in the unixdaemon puppet-lint-plugins repo.


Dean Wilson