Ubuntu – Seemingly random “Authentication is required to change your own user data”


Ever since I upgraded to 14.10 I get a strange behavior on my desktop. I get popups claiming "Authentication is required to change your own user data" and a prompt for my password. It happens at random times, though it seems to get triggered by my actions. For example, it happens every time I switch keyboard layouts, but only after I've been working for a while. Sometimes it pops up several times in a row.

Hitting "Cancel" doesn't seem to cause any problems.

Clicking "Details" on the authentication dialog reveals Action: org.freedesktop.accounts.change-own-user-data and Vendor:.

I looked at /usr/share/polkit-1/actions/org.freedesktop.accounts.policy, and under the change-own-user-data action, the settings are:


I don't have any interesting files under /etc/polkit-1.

My laptop has a very similar setup (14.10, same policy files) but the problem does not exist there.

Is there a way to find what is triggering those popups, or better yet, just get rid of them?

Best Answer

Have you tried to rewrite the permissions to your home directory? open terminal:

cd /home/
chown -R your-account-name your-account-name
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