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This error occurred when I was swapping a moodle 2 installation from one server to another and the actual file in the moodledata directory was not copied over correctly.
The entry in the Moodle 2 database referenced a legacy resource file but the actual file did not exist on the server.
The screen reported Permissions error which is kind of correct but "file not found" would be more appropriate.
- Using Moodle file problem after upgrade forum discussion about how the error could have occurred