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Re: [PATCH] change default --format from gnu to posix

From: Mike Frysinger
Subject: Re: [PATCH] change default --format from gnu to posix
Date: Fri, 10 Dec 2021 23:31:11 -0500

On 10 Dec 2021 17:23, Paul Eggert wrote:
> On 12/10/21 16:43, Mike Frysinger wrote:
> > POSIX formally standardized this over 20 years ago.
> Well, to be fair POSIX standardized both pax and ustar format, and 
> they're both still part of the POSIX standard. Switching to a standard 
> format wouldn't necessarily mean that we'd switch to pax, and there 
> might be reasons to switch to ustar (or to a ustar subset) if we're 
> going to switch at all.

feature-wise, ustar is a step back compared to the gnu format.  so i'm not
sure why that option is even worth considering.  any change is disruptive,
so better to do it once.

> > * what projects/versions exactly are impacted ?
> > * what systems (i.e. OS/distros) exactly are impacted ?
> I think Michał was attempting to cite this:
> https://mgorny.pl/articles/portability-of-tar-features.html

thanks, that's helpful

i think the take away is that GNU tar moves the ecosystem.  if it changed
its default to pax, then projects would be more incentivized to update.
it's circular to justify sticking with old formats because newer formats
aren't as widely supported, since tools justify not updating because GNU
tar isn't producing it.  users are the ones left holding the bag.  they
might find that the features they need are possible with --format posix,
but then get stuck with deficient tools.

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