|AT&T Bell Laboratories
|November 3, 1971
|Unix and Unix-like, IBM i
The command chown //, an abbreviation of change owner, is used on Unix and Unix-like operating systems to change the owner of file system files and directories. Unprivileged (regular) users who wish to change the group membership of a file that they own may use chgrp.
The ownership of any file in the system may only be altered by a super-user. A user cannot give away ownership of a file, even when the user owns it. Similarly, only a member of a group can change a file's group ID to that group.
The command is available as a separate package for Microsoft Windows as part of the UnxUtils collection of native Win32 ports of common GNU Unix-like utilities. The chown command has also been ported to the IBM i operating system.