Actually, it is exactly the same file since it is located on a nfs directory. In the full script, I am now printing the value if a -e test returns true before going to the test that breaks and the path is exactly the same (which is expected).
Re^2: -s test option returns differently in some cases
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...and the accounts on both machines have identical permissions and the NFS mounts are made in identical fashion i.e. with identical options, on the same mount point - each of which has identical permissions down to the mount point ?
A user level that continues to overstate my experience :-))