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Re: [Bug-tar] Re: AMTAR brokenness

From: Bob Friesenhahn
Subject: Re: [Bug-tar] Re: AMTAR brokenness
Date: Fri, 16 Apr 2004 09:10:24 -0500 (CDT)

On Fri, 16 Apr 2004, Alexandre Duret-Lutz wrote:
> By the way, the pax manpage from the Heirloom Toolchest
> (http://heirloom.berlios.de/man/pax.1.html) mentions that "due
> to implementation errors, file names longer than 99 characters
> can not considered to be generally portable" when taking about
> the ustar format.
> I think it's the only place where I've read this.  Has anybody
> seen such implementation?  I'm tempted to think we shouldn't
> care.

More than likely such implementations exist.  Usually when tar
programs break while extracting long file names, they continue on,
leaving bad file names in their wake.  Probably the user won't even
notice until something doesn't work.

Is there a reason to allow file names longer than 99 characters in a
package?  Clearly this is non-portable.  Why not enforce a maximum
file name length of 99 characters in Automake?  One way to enforce
this is to use sed to truncate file names longer than 99 characters
before passing them to tar so that tar complains/fails during 'make

Bob Friesenhahn

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