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[Bug-tar] Tar doesn't stop tape after extracting all specified files

From: Don Himelrick
Subject: [Bug-tar] Tar doesn't stop tape after extracting all specified files
Date: Wed, 01 Oct 2003 14:14:24 -0400

I don't know if this is technically a tar bug or maybe a gzip thing, but
it just doesn't seem "right" to me.  I have a 200G ultrium tape that I
almost fill up on nightly backups.  When I specify only one or a few
files to be extracted, tar ties up the tape drive for hours, like it is
reading the entire tape until the end. Even when the files to be
extracted are at the beginning of the tape and are done extracting after
only two minutes, tar seems to keep on reading the tape.  If I control-C
tar, the tape stops after only minute or two, which makes me think tar
might be the culprit, because as soon as it is forcefully terminated the
tape is freed up.  The more I think about this, the more I suspect it
might have something to do with gzip.  

FYI, the command I'm using is:

tar -xvzf /dev/st0 -T files.list

Where files.list is a plain text file with one file per line.

So, to sum it all up.  I would expect tar to exit and free up the tape
(or gzip?) as soon as the last file to be extracted is completely

Don Himelrick <address@hidden>

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