I have an external drive that is not allowing me access to my own material I have saved to it. I have been able to sometimes log in terminal ‘gksudo nautulis’ and bring some files to ardour, but they are only partial and it is temporary. how do I permanently change permissions on my drive that says I am not owner and can’t change permissions?
If root cannot change permissions it is likely you have the drive mounted as read only. This is common with NTFS filesystems not mounted through NTFS-3G and with HFS filesystems depending on how they are mounted. You would have to mount it correctly in order to change anything on the drive.
However root should always be able to copy files from the drive onto another disk, and you can modify the copies. As such you should be able to chown the copies to the correct user as the owner and do that to allow you to work as normal.