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Re: [Bug-tar] Re: AMTAR brokenness

From: Paul Eggert
Subject: Re: [Bug-tar] Re: AMTAR brokenness
Date: Fri, 16 Apr 2004 00:00:17 -0700
User-agent: Gnus/5.1006 (Gnus v5.10.6) Emacs/21.3 (gnu/linux)

Alexandre Duret-Lutz <address@hidden> writes:

> 1. The --format=posix options is a GNU Tar option, which means `make dist'
>    can no longer be run with other make implementations.

Presumably you meant "tar implementations" and not "make
implementations"?  But this is already the case, as the existing code
uses the -o option, which is specific to GNU tar (the -o option has a
different meaning with traditional tar, and traditional tar rejects -o
when creating archives).

> 2. The --format option is a new option of tar 1.13.93, so the
>    produced Makefile will not even run with widespread tar versions.

True: any such patch along these lines would have to configure this,
depending on whether "tar" supported the option in question.  Come to
think of it, while you're at it you could also see whether -o is
supported, so that the makefile ports to non-GNU tar implementations.

> 3. The POSIX format is young

Quite true.  Few implementations support the POSIX 1003.1-2001 format.

> Forcing the ustar format might be a possibility (is it?), if
> that can be done portably (that probably involves a configure
> check).

Yes, I think this is the best approach: that is, use --format=ustar if
available, then -o if that works, otherwise don't use anything.

> Another idea is to arrange the dist rules so users have
> a way to override the tar options.

That also might be helpful, though I think not as useful; most users
won't want to futz with this.

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