# Ubuntu – Unable to access external drives

hard drivepermissionsusb-drive

I am no longer able to access external drives on my computer (running Ubuntu 18.04 LTS). It was working fine a few weeks ago, so I'm not sure what changed.

I get this error message when trying to open the drive in Nautilus, for both USB drives and my extra hard drive:

Unable to access "8.1 GB Volume"
Not authorized to perform action


When I run Nautilus as root, it doesn't even show the drives. I was able to run sudo gnome-disks and interact with the drives that way. If I just run gnome-disks, then I don't have permissions and get the same error message.

I don't have this issue on another Ubuntu 18.04 LTS machine with the same USB drive. Nautilus without root works fine. So I don't think the issue is with the drives but rather is with the computer.

• I finally figured it out. My user account was part of the chrome-remote-desktop group. Once I removed it from that group and restarted my computer, auto-mounting and accessing the drives works as expected.
I had added my user to the chrome-remote-desktop following this post: https://superuser.com/a/850359/588342. After doing so, chrome-remote-desktop auto-runs on startup. Instead of that, I just added a command to run it in "Startup Applications Preferences": /opt/google/chrome-remote-desktop/chrome-remote-desktop --start