tar(1) — Linux manual page


TAR(1)                       GNU TAR Manual                       TAR(1)

NAME         top

       tar - an archiving utility

SYNOPSIS         top

   Traditional usage
       tar {A|c|d|r|t|u|x}[GnSkUWOmpsMBiajJzZhPlRvwo] [ARG...]

   UNIX-style usage
       tar -A [OPTIONS] -f ARCHIVE ARCHIVE...

       tar -c [-f ARCHIVE] [OPTIONS] [FILE...]

       tar -d [-f ARCHIVE] [OPTIONS] [FILE...]

       tar -r [-f ARCHIVE] [OPTIONS] [FILE...]

       tar -t [-f ARCHIVE] [OPTIONS] [MEMBER...]

       tar -u [-f ARCHIVE] [OPTIONS] [FILE...]

       tar -x [-f ARCHIVE] [OPTIONS] [MEMBER...]

   GNU-style usage
       tar {--catenate|--concatenate} [OPTIONS] --file ARCHIVE

       tar --create [--file ARCHIVE] [OPTIONS] [FILE...]

       tar {--diff|--compare} [--file ARCHIVE] [OPTIONS] [FILE...]

       tar --delete [--file ARCHIVE] [OPTIONS] [MEMBER...]

       tar --append [--file ARCHIVE] [OPTIONS] [FILE...]

       tar --list [--file ARCHIVE] [OPTIONS] [MEMBER...]

       tar --test-label [--file ARCHIVE] [OPTIONS] [LABEL...]

       tar --update [--file ARCHIVE] [OPTIONS] [FILE...]

       tar {--extract|--get} [--file ARCHIVE] [OPTIONS] [MEMBER...]

NOTE         top

       This manpage is a short description of GNU tar.  For a detailed
       discussion, including examples and usage recommendations, refer
       to the GNU Tar Manual available in texinfo format.  If the info
       reader and the tar documentation are properly installed on your
       system, the command

           info tar

       should give you access to the complete manual.

       You can also view the manual using the info mode in emacs(1), or
       find it in various formats online at


       If any discrepancies occur between this manpage and the GNU Tar
       Manual, the later shall be considered the authoritative source.

DESCRIPTION         top

       GNU tar is an archiving program designed to store multiple files
       in a single file (an archive), and to manipulate such archives.
       The archive can be either a regular file or a device (e.g. a tape
       drive, hence the name of the program, which stands for tape
       archiver), which can be located either on the local or on a
       remote machine.

   Option styles
       Options to GNU tar can be given in three different styles.  In
       traditional style, the first argument is a cluster of option
       letters and all subsequent arguments supply arguments to those
       options that require them.  The arguments are read in the same
       order as the option letters.  Any command line words that remain
       after all options have been processed are treated as non-option
       arguments: file or archive member names.

       For example, the c option requires creating the archive, the v
       option requests the verbose operation, and the f option takes an
       argument that sets the name of the archive to operate upon.  The
       following command, written in the traditional style, instructs
       tar to store all files from the directory /etc into the archive
       file etc.tar, verbosely listing the files being archived:

       tar cfv etc.tar /etc

       In UNIX or short-option style, each option letter is prefixed
       with a single dash, as in other command line utilities.  If an
       option takes an argument, the argument follows it, either as a
       separate command line word, or immediately following the option.
       However, if the option takes an optional argument, the argument
       must follow the option letter without any intervening whitespace,
       as in -g/tmp/snar.db.

       Any number of options not taking arguments can be clustered
       together after a single dash, e.g. -vkp.  An option that takes an
       argument (whether mandatory or optional) can appear at the end of
       such a cluster, e.g. -vkpf a.tar.

       The example command above written in the short-option style could
       look like:

       tar -cvf etc.tar /etc
       tar -c -v -f etc.tar /etc

       In GNU or long-option style, each option begins with two dashes
       and has a meaningful name, consisting of lower-case letters and
       dashes.  When used, the long option can be abbreviated to its
       initial letters, provided that this does not create ambiguity.
       Arguments to long options are supplied either as a separate
       command line word, immediately following the option, or separated
       from the option by an equals sign with no intervening whitespace.
       Optional arguments must always use the latter method.

       Here are several ways of writing the example command in this

       tar --create --file etc.tar --verbose /etc
       or (abbreviating some options):
       tar --cre --file=etc.tar --verb /etc

       The options in all three styles can be intermixed, although doing
       so with old options is not encouraged.

   Operation mode
       The options listed in the table below tell GNU tar what operation
       it is to perform.  Exactly one of them must be given.  The
       meaning of non-option arguments depends on the operation mode

       -A, --catenate, --concatenate
              Append archives to the end of another archive.  The
              arguments are treated as the names of archives to append.
              All archives must be of the same format as the archive
              they are appended to, otherwise the resulting archive
              might be unusable with non-GNU implementations of tar.
              Notice also that when more than one archive is given, the
              members from archives other than the first one will be
              accessible in the resulting archive only when using the -i
              (--ignore-zeros) option.

              Compressed archives cannot be concatenated.

       -c, --create
              Create a new archive.  Arguments supply the names of the
              files to be archived.  Directories are archived
              recursively, unless the --no-recursion option is given.

       -d, --diff, --compare
              Find differences between archive and file system.  The
              arguments are optional and specify archive members to
              compare.  If not given, the current working directory is

              Delete from the archive.  The arguments supply names of
              the archive members to be removed.  At least one argument
              must be given.

              This option does not operate on compressed archives.
              There is no short option equivalent.

       -r, --append
              Append files to the end of an archive.  Arguments have the
              same meaning as for -c (--create).

       -t, --list
              List the contents of an archive.  Arguments are optional.
              When given, they specify the names of the members to list.

              Test the archive volume label and exit.  When used without
              arguments, it prints the volume label (if any) and exits
              with status 0.  When one or more command line arguments
              are given.  tar compares the volume label with each
              argument.  It exits with code 0 if a match is found, and
              with code 1 otherwise.  No output is displayed, unless
              used together with the -v (--verbose) option.

              There is no short option equivalent for this option.

       -u, --update
              Append files which are newer than the corresponding copy
              in the archive.  Arguments have the same meaning as with
              the -c and -r options.  Notice, that newer files don't
              replace their old archive copies, but instead are appended
              to the end of archive.  The resulting archive can thus
              contain several members of the same name, corresponding to
              various versions of the same file.

       -x, --extract, --get
              Extract files from an archive.  Arguments are optional.
              When given, they specify names of the archive members to
              be extracted.

              Show built-in defaults for various tar options and exit.

       -?, --help
              Display a short option summary and exit.

              Display a list of available options and exit.

              Print program version and copyright information and exit.

OPTIONS         top

   Operation modifiers
              Check device numbers when creating incremental archives

       -g, --listed-incremental=FILE
              Handle new GNU-format incremental backups.  FILE is the
              name of a snapshot file, where tar stores additional
              information which is used to decide which files changed
              since the previous incremental dump and, consequently,
              must be dumped again.  If FILE does not exist when
              creating an archive, it will be created and all files will
              be added to the resulting archive (the level 0 dump).  To
              create incremental archives of non-zero level N, you need
              a copy of the snapshot file created for level N-1, and use
              it as FILE.

              When listing or extracting, the actual content of FILE is
              not inspected, it is needed only due to syntactical
              requirements.  It is therefore common practice to use
              /dev/null in its place.

              Use METHOD to detect holes in sparse files.  This option
              implies --sparse.  Valid values for METHOD are seek and
              raw.  Default is seek with fallback to raw when not

       -G, --incremental
              Handle old GNU-format incremental backups.

              Do not exit with nonzero on unreadable files.

              Set dump level for a created listed-incremental archive.
              Currently only --level=0 is meaningful: it instructs tar
              to truncate the snapshot file before dumping, thereby
              forcing a level 0 dump.

       -n, --seek
              Assume the archive is seekable.  Normally tar determines
              automatically whether the archive can be seeked or not.
              This option is intended for use in cases when such
              recognition fails.  It takes effect only if the archive is
              open for reading (e.g. with --list or --extract options).

              Do not check device numbers when creating incremental

              Assume the archive is not seekable.

              Process only the Nth occurrence of each file in the
              archive.  This option is valid only when used with one of
              the following subcommands: --delete, --diff, --extract or
              --list and when a list of files is given either on the
              command line or via the -T option.  The default N is 1.

              Disable the use of some potentially harmful options.

              Set which version of the sparse format to use.  This
              option implies --sparse.  Valid argument values are 0.0,
              0.1, and 1.0.  For a detailed discussion of sparse
              formats, refer to the GNU Tar Manual, appendix D, "Sparse
              Formats".  Using the info reader, it can be accessed
              running the following command: info tar 'Sparse Formats'.

       -S, --sparse
              Handle sparse files efficiently.  Some files in the file
              system may have segments which were actually never written
              (quite often these are database files created by such
              systems as DBM).  When given this option, tar attempts to
              determine if the file is sparse prior to archiving it, and
              if so, to reduce the resulting archive size by not dumping
              empty parts of the file.

   Overwrite control
       These options control tar actions when extracting a file over an
       existing copy on disk.

       -k, --keep-old-files
              Don't replace existing files when extracting.

              Don't replace existing files that are newer than their
              archive copies.

              Don't replace existing symlinks to directories when

              Preserve metadata of existing directories.

              Extract all files into DIR, or, if used without argument,
              into a subdirectory named by the base name of the archive
              (minus standard compression suffixes recognizable by

              Overwrite existing files when extracting.

              Overwrite metadata of existing directories when extracting

              Recursively remove all files in the directory prior to
              extracting it.

              Remove files from disk after adding them to the archive.

              Don't replace existing files when extracting, silently
              skip over them.

       -U, --unlink-first
              Remove each file prior to extracting over it.

       -W, --verify
              Verify the archive after writing it.

   Output stream selection
              Ignore subprocess exit codes.

              Treat non-zero exit codes of children as error (default).

       -O, --to-stdout
              Extract files to standard output.

              Pipe extracted files to COMMAND.  The argument is the
              pathname of an external program, optionally with command
              line arguments.  The program will be invoked and the
              contents of the file being extracted supplied to it on its
              standard input.  Additional data will be supplied via the
              following environment variables:

                     Type of the file. It is a single letter with the
                     following meaning:

                             f           Regular file
                             d           Directory
                             l           Symbolic link
                             h           Hard link
                             b           Block device
                             c           Character device

                     Currently only regular files are supported.

                     File mode, an octal number.

                     The name of the file.

                     Name of the file as stored in the archive.

                     Name of the file owner.

                     Name of the file owner group.

                     Time of last access. It is a decimal number,
                     representing seconds since the Epoch.  If the
                     archive provides times with nanosecond precision,
                     the nanoseconds are appended to the timestamp after
                     a decimal point.

                     Time of last modification.

                     Time of last status change.

                     Size of the file.

                     UID of the file owner.

                     GID of the file owner.

              Additionally, the following variables contain information
              about tar operation mode and the archive being processed:

                     GNU tar version number.

                     The name of the archive tar is processing.

                     Current blocking factor, i.e. number of 512-byte
                     blocks in a record.

                     Ordinal number of the volume tar is processing (set
                     if reading a multi-volume archive).

                     Format of the archive being processed.  One of:
                     gnu, oldgnu, posix, ustar, v7.

                     A short option (with a leading dash) describing the
                     operation tar is executing.

   Handling of file attributes
              Preserve access times on dumped files, either by restoring
              the times after reading (METHOD=replace, this is the
              default) or by not setting the times in the first place

              Delay setting modification times and permissions of
              extracted directories until the end of extraction.  Use
              this option when extracting from an archive which has
              unusual member ordering.

              Force NAME as group for added files.  If GID is not
              supplied, NAME can be either a user name or numeric GID.
              In this case the missing part (GID or name) will be
              inferred from the current host's group database.

              When used with --group-map=FILE, affects only those files
              whose owner group is not listed in FILE.

              Read group translation map from FILE.  Empty lines are
              ignored.  Comments are introduced with # sign and extend
              to the end of line.  Each non-empty line in FILE defines
              translation for a single group.  It must consist of two
              fields, delimited by any amount of whitespace:

              OLDGRP NEWGRP[:NEWGID]

              OLDGRP is either a valid group name or a GID prefixed with
              +.  Unless NEWGID is supplied, NEWGRP must also be either
              a valid group name or a +GID.  Otherwise, both NEWGRP and
              NEWGID need not be listed in the system group database.

              As a result, each input file with owner group OLDGRP will
              be stored in archive with owner group NEWGRP and GID

              Force symbolic mode CHANGES for added files.

              Set mtime for added files.  DATE-OR-FILE is either a
              date/time in almost arbitrary format, or the name of an
              existing file.  In the latter case the mtime of that file
              will be used.

       -m, --touch
              Don't extract file modified time.

              Cancel the effect of the prior --delay-directory-restore

              Extract files as yourself (default for ordinary users).

              Apply the user's umask when extracting permissions from
              the archive (default for ordinary users).

              Always use numbers for user/group names.

              Force NAME as owner for added files.  If UID is not
              supplied, NAME can be either a user name or numeric UID.
              In this case the missing part (UID or name) will be
              inferred from the current host's user database.

              When used with --owner-map=FILE, affects only those files
              whose owner is not listed in FILE.

              Read owner translation map from FILE.  Empty lines are
              ignored.  Comments are introduced with # sign and extend
              to the end of line.  Each non-empty line in FILE defines
              translation for a single UID.  It must consist of two
              fields, delimited by any amount of whitespace:

              OLDUSR NEWUSR[:NEWUID]

              OLDUSR is either a valid user name or a UID prefixed with
              +.  Unless NEWUID is supplied, NEWUSR must also be either
              a valid user name or a +UID.  Otherwise, both NEWUSR and
              NEWUID need not be listed in the system user database.

              As a result, each input file owned by OLDUSR will be
              stored in archive with owner name NEWUSR and UID NEWUID.

       -p, --preserve-permissions, --same-permissions
              Set permissions of extracted files to those recorded in
              the archive (default for superuser).

              Try extracting files with the same ownership as exists in
              the archive (default for superuser).

       -s, --preserve-order, --same-order
              Tell tar that the list of file names to process is sorted
              in the same order as the files in the archive.

              When creating an archive, sort directory entries according
              to ORDER, which is one of none, name, or inode.

              The default is --sort=none, which stores archive members
              in the same order as returned by the operating system.

              Using --sort=name ensures the member ordering in the
              created archive is uniform and reproducible.

              Using --sort=inode reduces the number of disk seeks made
              when creating the archive and thus can considerably speed
              up archivation.  This sorting order is supported only if
              the underlying system provides the necessary information.

   Extended file attributes
       --acls Enable POSIX ACLs support.

              Disable POSIX ACLs support.

              Enable SELinux context support.

              Disable SELinux context support.

              Enable extended attributes support.

              Disable extended attributes support.

              Specify the exclude pattern for xattr keys.  PATTERN is a
              globbing pattern, e.g. --xattrs-exclude='user.*' to
              include only attributes from the user namespace.

              Specify the include pattern for xattr keys.  PATTERN is a
              globbing pattern.

   Device selection and switching
       -f, --file=ARCHIVE
              Use archive file or device ARCHIVE.  If this option is not
              given, tar will first examine the environment variable
              `TAPE'.  If it is set, its value will be used as the
              archive name.  Otherwise, tar will assume the compiled-in
              default.  The default value can be inspected either using
              the --show-defaults option, or at the end of the tar
              --help output.

              An archive name that has a colon in it specifies a file or
              device on a remote machine.  The part before the colon is
              taken as the machine name or IP address, and the part
              after it as the file or device pathname, e.g.:


              An optional username can be prefixed to the hostname,
              placing a @ sign between them.

              By default, the remote host is accessed via the rsh(1)
              command.  Nowadays it is common to use ssh(1) instead.
              You can do so by giving the following command line option:


              The remote machine should have the rmt(8) command
              installed.  If its pathname does not match tar's default,
              you can inform tar about the correct pathname using the
              --rmt-command option.

              Archive file is local even if it has a colon.

       -F, --info-script=COMMAND, --new-volume-script=COMMAND
              Run COMMAND at the end of each tape (implies -M).  The
              command can include arguments.  When started, it will
              inherit tar's environment plus the following variables:

                     GNU tar version number.

                     The name of the archive tar is processing.

                     Current blocking factor, i.e. number of 512-byte
                     blocks in a record.

                     Ordinal number of the volume tar is processing (set
                     if reading a multi-volume archive).

                     Format of the archive being processed.  One of:
                     gnu, oldgnu, posix, ustar, v7.

                     A short option (with a leading dash) describing the
                     operation tar is executing.

              TAR_FD File descriptor which can be used to communicate
                     the new volume name to tar.

              If the info script fails, tar exits; otherwise, it begins
              writing the next volume.

       -L, --tape-length=N
              Change tape after writing Nx1024 bytes.  If N is followed
              by a size suffix (see the subsection Size suffixes below),
              the suffix specifies the multiplicative factor to be used
              instead of 1024.

              This option implies -M.

       -M, --multi-volume
              Create/list/extract multi-volume archive.

              Use COMMAND instead of rmt when accessing remote archives.
              See the description of the -f option, above.

              Use COMMAND instead of rsh when accessing remote archives.
              See the description of the -f option, above.

              When this option is used in conjunction with
              --multi-volume, tar will keep track of which volume of a
              multi-volume archive it is working in FILE.

   Device blocking
       -b, --blocking-factor=BLOCKS
              Set record size to BLOCKSx512 bytes.

       -B, --read-full-records
              When listing or extracting, accept incomplete input
              records after end-of-file marker.

       -i, --ignore-zeros
              Ignore zeroed blocks in archive.  Normally two consecutive
              512-blocks filled with zeroes mean EOF and tar stops
              reading after encountering them.  This option instructs it
              to read further and is useful when reading archives
              created with the -A option.

              Set record size.  NUMBER is the number of bytes per
              record.  It must be multiple of 512.  It can can be
              suffixed with a size suffix, e.g. --record-size=10K, for
              10 Kilobytes.  See the subsection Size suffixes, for a
              list of valid suffixes.

   Archive format selection
       -H, --format=FORMAT
              Create archive of the given format.  Valid formats are:

              gnu    GNU tar 1.13.x format

              oldgnu GNU format as per tar <= 1.12.

              pax, posix
                     POSIX 1003.1-2001 (pax) format.

              ustar  POSIX 1003.1-1988 (ustar) format.

              v7     Old V7 tar format.

       --old-archive, --portability
              Same as --format=v7.

              Control pax keywords when creating PAX archives (-H pax).
              This option is equivalent to the -o option of the pax(1)

              Same as --format=posix.

       -V, --label=TEXT
              Create archive with volume name TEXT.  If listing or
              extracting, use TEXT as a globbing pattern for volume

   Compression options
       -a, --auto-compress
              Use archive suffix to determine the compression program.

       -I, --use-compress-program=COMMAND
              Filter data through COMMAND.  It must accept the -d
              option, for decompression.  The argument can contain
              command line options.

       -j, --bzip2
              Filter the archive through bzip2(1).

       -J, --xz
              Filter the archive through xz(1).

       --lzip Filter the archive through lzip(1).

       --lzma Filter the archive through lzma(1).

       --lzop Filter the archive through lzop(1).

              Do not use archive suffix to determine the compression

       -z, --gzip, --gunzip, --ungzip
              Filter the archive through gzip(1).

       -Z, --compress, --uncompress
              Filter the archive through compress(1).

       --zstd Filter the archive through zstd(1).

   Local file selection
              Add FILE to the archive (useful if its name starts with a

              Backup before removal.  The CONTROL argument, if supplied,
              controls the backup policy.  Its valid values are:

              none, off
                     Never make backups.

              t, numbered
                     Make numbered backups.

              nil, existing
                     Make numbered backups if numbered backups exist,
                     simple backups otherwise.

              never, simple
                     Always make simple backups

              If CONTROL is not given, the value is taken from the
              VERSION_CONTROL environment variable.  If it is not set,
              existing is assumed.

       -C, --directory=DIR
              Change to DIR before performing any operations.  This
              option is order-sensitive, i.e. it affects all options
              that follow.

              Exclude files matching PATTERN, a glob(3)-style wildcard

              Exclude backup and lock files.

              Exclude contents of directories containing file
              CACHEDIR.TAG, except for the tag file itself.

              Exclude directories containing file CACHEDIR.TAG and the
              file itself.

              Exclude everything under directories containing

              Before dumping a directory, see if it contains FILE.  If
              so, read exclusion patterns from this file.  The patterns
              affect only the directory itself.

              Same as --exclude-ignore, except that patterns from FILE
              affect both the directory and all its subdirectories.

              Exclude contents of directories containing FILE, except
              for FILE itself.

              Exclude directories containing FILE.

              Exclude everything under directories containing FILE.

              Exclude version control system directories.

              Exclude files that match patterns read from VCS-specific
              ignore files.  Supported files are: .cvsignore,
              .gitignore, .bzrignore, and .hgignore.

       -h, --dereference
              Follow symlinks; archive and dump the files they point to.

              Follow hard links; archive and dump the files they refer

       -K, --starting-file=MEMBER
              Begin at the given member in the archive.

              Work on files whose data changed after the DATE.  If DATE
              starts with / or . it is taken to be a file name; the
              mtime of that file is used as the date.

              Disable the effect of the previous --null option.

              Avoid descending automatically in directories.

              Do not unquote input file or member names.

              Treat each line read from a file list as if it were
              supplied in the command line.  I.e., leading and trailing
              whitespace is removed and, if the resulting string begins
              with a dash, it is treated as tar command line option.

              This is the default behavior.  The
              --no-verbatim-files-from option is provided as a way to
              restore it after --verbatim-files-from option.

              This option is positional: it affects all --files-from
              options that occur after it in, until
              --verbatim-files-from option or end of line, whichever
              occurs first.

              It is implied by the --no-null option.

       --null Instruct subsequent -T options to read null-terminated
              names verbatim (disables special handling of names that
              start with a dash).

              See also --verbatim-files-from.

       -N, --newer=DATE, --after-date=DATE
              Only store files newer than DATE.  If DATE starts with /
              or . it is taken to be a file name; the mtime of that file
              is used as the date.

              Stay in local file system when creating archive.

       -P, --absolute-names
              Don't strip leading slashes from file names when creating

              Recurse into directories (default).

              Backup before removal, override usual suffix.  Default
              suffix is ~, unless overridden by environment variable

       -T, --files-from=FILE
              Get names to extract or create from FILE.

              Unless specified otherwise, the FILE must contain a list
              of names separated by ASCII LF (i.e. one name per line).
              The names read are handled the same way as command line
              arguments.  They undergo quote removal and word splitting,
              and any string that starts with a - is handled as tar
              command line option.

              If this behavior is undesirable, it can be turned off
              using the --verbatim-files-from option.

              The --null option instructs tar that the names in FILE are
              separated by ASCII NUL character, instead of LF.  It is
              useful if the list is generated by find(1) -print0

              Unquote file or member names (default).

              Treat each line obtained from a file list as a file name,
              even if it starts with a dash.  File lists are supplied
              with the --files-from (-T) option.  The default behavior
              is to handle names supplied in file lists as if they were
              typed in the command line, i.e. any names starting with a
              dash are treated as tar options.  The
              --verbatim-files-from option disables this behavior.

              This option affects all --files-from options that occur
              after it in the command line.  Its effect is reverted by
              the --no-verbatim-files-from option.

              This option is implied by the --null option.

              See also --add-file.

       -X, --exclude-from=FILE
              Exclude files matching patterns listed in FILE.

   File name transformations
              Strip NUMBER leading components from file names on

       --transform=EXPRESSION, --xform=EXPRESSION
              Use sed replace EXPRESSION to transform file names.

   File name matching options
       These options affect both exclude and include patterns.

              Patterns match file name start.

              Ignore case.

              Patterns match after any / (default for exclusion).

              Case sensitive matching (default).

              Verbatim string matching.

              Wildcards do not match /.

              Use wildcards (default for exclusion).

              Wildcards match / (default for exclusion).

   Informative output
              Display progress messages every Nth record (default 10).

              Run ACTION on each checkpoint.

              Only set time when the file is more recent than what was
              given with --mtime.

              Print file time to its full resolution.

              Send verbose output to FILE.

       -l, --check-links
              Print a message if not all links are dumped.

              Disable quoting for characters from STRING.

              Additionally quote characters from STRING.

              Set quoting style for file and member names.  Valid values
              for STYLE are literal, shell, shell-always, c, c-maybe,
              escape, locale, clocale.

       -R, --block-number
              Show block number within archive with each message.

              When listing or extracting, list each directory that does
              not match search criteria.

       --show-transformed-names, --show-stored-names
              Show file or archive names after transformation by --strip
              and --transform options.

              Print total bytes after processing the archive.  If SIGNAL
              is given, print total bytes when this signal is delivered.
              Allowed signals are: SIGHUP, SIGQUIT, SIGINT, SIGUSR1, and
              SIGUSR2.  The SIG prefix can be omitted.

       --utc  Print file modification times in UTC.

       -v, --verbose
              Verbosely list files processed.  Each instance of this
              option on the command line increases the verbosity level
              by one.  The maximum verbosity level is 3.  For a detailed
              discussion of how various verbosity levels affect tar's
              output, please refer to GNU Tar Manual, subsection 2.5.2
              "The '--verbose' Option".

              Enable or disable warning messages identified by KEYWORD.
              The messages are suppressed if KEYWORD is prefixed with
              no- and enabled otherwise.

              Multiple --warning options accumulate.

              Keywords controlling general tar operation:

              all    Enable all warning messages.  This is the default.

              none   Disable all warning messages.

                     "%s: file name read contains nul character"

                     "A lone zero block at %s"

              Keywords applicable for tar --create:

                     "%s: contains a cache directory tag %s; %s"

                     "%s: File shrank by %s bytes; padding with zeros"

              xdev   "%s: file is on a different filesystem; not dumped"

                     "%s: Unknown file type; file ignored"
                     "%s: socket ignored"
                     "%s: door ignored"

                     "%s: file is unchanged; not dumped"

                     "%s: archive cannot contain itself; not dumped"

                     "%s: File removed before we read it"

                     "%s: file changed as we read it"

                     Suppresses warnings about unreadable files or
                     directories. This keyword applies only if used
                     together with the --ignore-failed-read option.

              Keywords applicable for tar --extract:

                     "%s: skipping existing file"

                     "%s: implausibly old time stamp %s"
                     "%s: time stamp %s is %s s in the future"

                     "Extracting contiguous files as regular files"

                     "Attempting extraction of symbolic links as hard

                     "%s: Unknown file type '%c', extracted as normal

                     "Current %s is newer or same age"

                     "Ignoring unknown extended header keyword '%s'"

                     Controls verbose description of failures occurring
                     when trying to run alternative decompressor
                     programs.  This warning is disabled by default
                     (unless --verbose is used).  A common example of
                     what you can get when using this warning is:

                     $ tar --warning=decompress-program -x -f archive.Z
                     tar (child): cannot run compress: No such file or directory
                     tar (child): trying gzip

                     This means that tar first tried to decompress
                     archive.Z using compress, and, when that failed,
                     switched to gzip.

                     "Record size = %lu blocks"

              Keywords controlling incremental extraction:

                     "%s: Directory has been renamed from %s"
                     "%s: Directory has been renamed"

                     "%s: Directory is new"

              xdev   "%s: directory is on a different device: not

                     "Malformed dumpdir: 'X' never used"

       -w, --interactive, --confirmation
              Ask for confirmation for every action.

   Compatibility options
       -o     When creating, same as --old-archive.  When extracting,
              same as --no-same-owner.

   Size suffixes
               Suffix    Units                   Byte Equivalent
               b         Blocks                  SIZE x 512
               B         Kilobytes               SIZE x 1024
               c         Bytes                   SIZE
               G         Gigabytes               SIZE x 1024^3
               K         Kilobytes               SIZE x 1024
               k         Kilobytes               SIZE x 1024
               M         Megabytes               SIZE x 1024^2
               P         Petabytes               SIZE x 1024^5
               T         Terabytes               SIZE x 1024^4
               w         Words                   SIZE x 2

RETURN VALUE         top

       Tar's exit code indicates whether it was able to successfully
       perform the requested operation, and if not, what kind of error

       0      Successful termination.

       1      Some files differ.  If tar was invoked with the --compare
              (--diff, -d) command line option, this means that some
              files in the archive differ from their disk counterparts.
              If tar was given one of the --create, --append or --update
              options, this exit code means that some files were changed
              while being archived and so the resulting archive does not
              contain the exact copy of the file set.

       2      Fatal error.  This means that some fatal, unrecoverable
              error occurred.

       If a subprocess that had been invoked by tar exited with a
       nonzero exit code, tar itself exits with that code as well.  This
       can happen, for example, if a compression option (e.g. -z) was
       used and the external compressor program failed.  Another example
       is rmt failure during backup to a remote device.

SEE ALSO         top

       bzip2(1), compress(1), gzip(1), lzma(1), lzop(1), rmt(8),
       symlink(7), xz(1), zstd(1).

       Complete tar manual: run info tar or use emacs(1) info mode to
       read it.

       Online copies of GNU tar documentation in various formats can be
       found at:


BUG REPORTS         top

       Report bugs to <bug-tar@gnu.org>.

COPYRIGHT         top

       Copyright © 2023 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
       License GPLv3+: GNU GPL version 3 or later
       This is free software: you are free to change and redistribute
       it.  There is NO WARRANTY, to the extent permitted by law.

COLOPHON         top

       This page is part of the tar (an archiver program) project.
       Information about the project can be found at 
       ⟨http://savannah.gnu.org/projects/tar/⟩.  If you have a bug report
       for this manual page, see
       ⟨http://savannah.gnu.org/bugs/?group=tar⟩.  This page was
       obtained from the project's upstream Git repository
       ⟨git://git.savannah.gnu.org/tar.git⟩ on 2023-12-22.  (At that
       time, the date of the most recent commit that was found in the
       repository was 2023-09-12.)  If you discover any rendering
       problems in this HTML version of the page, or you believe there
       is a better or more up-to-date source for the page, or you have
       corrections or improvements to the information in this COLOPHON
       (which is not part of the original manual page), send a mail to

TAR                           July 11, 2022                       TAR(1)

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