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[Bug-tar] win32 port of GNU tar unexpectedly dereferences shortcuts

From: Mark Brand
Subject: [Bug-tar] win32 port of GNU tar unexpectedly dereferences shortcuts
Date: Thu, 10 Feb 2005 13:32:52 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux i686; en-US; rv:1.7.5) Gecko/20041220

bug report for win32 port of GNU tar 1.13

Tar appears to try to resolve Windows shortcuts to the files they refer to when creating archives. If the referred to file does not exist, a pop-up dialog box appears with a message that windows is searching for the file!

I believe the desired default behavior would be to simply archive the .lnk file. I suppose that, if this default behavior were implemented, it might be OK, although not obviously desirable, to let --dereference override it. I myself would not accord the same status to windows shortcuts as to actual links in the file system. (I thought that shortcuts were supposed to operate at the level of the Explorer and GUIs but not at the command line. The "type" command doesn't dereference shortcuts.)

I observed this behavior on a Windows XP installation. The file system was NTFS.

To reproduce:

mkdir junk
cd junk
echo hello > file.txt
explorer .

(Make a shortcut by drag and drop called "Shortcut to file.txt.lnk" pointing to file.txt.)

tar -cvf ..\archive.tar  *
del  file.txt
tar -cvf ..\archive2.tar myshortcut.lnk *

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