Stupid tar Tricks
One of the most common programs on Linux systems for packaging files is the venerable tar. tar is short for tape archive, and originally, it would archive your files to a tape device. Now, you're more likely to use a file to make your archive. To use a tarfile, use the command-line option -f
Instead of using a tarfile, you can output your tarfile to stdout or input your tarfile from stdin by using a hyphen (-). With these options, you can tar up a directory and all of its subdirectories by using:
tar cf archive.tar dir
Then, extract it in another directory with:
tar xf archive.tar
When creating a tarfile, you can assign a volume name with the option -V
tar cf - dir1 | (cd dir2; tar xf -)
You can go even farther and move an entire directory structure over the network by executing:
tar cf - dir1 | ssh remote_host "( cd /path/to/dir2; tar xf - )"
GNU tar includes an option that lets you skip the cd part, -C /path/to/dest. You also can interact with tarfiles over the network by including a host part to the tarfile name. For example:
tar cvf username@remotehost:/path/to/dest/archive.tar dir1
This is done by using rsh as the communication mechanism. If you want to use something else, like ssh, use the command-line option --rsh-command CMD. Sometimes, you also may need to give the path to the rmt executable on the remote host. On some hosts, it won't be in the default location /usr/sbin/rmt. So, all together, this would look like:
tar -c -v --rsh-command ssh --rmt-command /sbin/rmt ↪-f username@host:/path/to/dest/archive.tar dir1
Although tar originally used to write its archive to a tape drive, it can be used to write to any device. For example, if you want to get a dump of your current filesystem to a secondary hard drive, use:
tar -cvzf /dev/hdd /
Of course, you need to run the above command as root. If you are writing your tarfile to a device that is too small, you can tell tar to do a multivolume archive with the -M option. For those of you who are old enough to remember floppy disks, you can back up your home directory to a series of floppy disks by executing:
tar -cvMf /dev/fd0 $HOME
If you are doing backups, you may want to preserve the file permissions. You can do this with the -p option. If you have symlinked files on your filesystem, you can dereference the symlinks with the -h option. This tells tar actually to dump the file that the symlink points to, not just the symlink.
Along the same lines, if you have several filesystems mounted, you can tell tar to stick to only one filesystem with the option -l. Hopefully, this gives you lots of ideas for ways to archive your files.
Practical Task Scheduling Deployment
July 20, 2016 12:00 pm CDT
One of the best things about the UNIX environment (aside from being stable and efficient) is the vast array of software tools available to help you do your job. Traditionally, a UNIX tool does only one thing, but does that one thing very well. For example, grep is very easy to use and can search vast amounts of data quickly. The find tool can find a particular file or files based on all kinds of criteria. It's pretty easy to string these tools together to build even more powerful tools, such as a tool that finds all of the .log files in the /home directory and searches each one for a particular entry. This erector-set mentality allows UNIX system administrators to seem to always have the right tool for the job.
Cron traditionally has been considered another such a tool for job scheduling, but is it enough? This webinar considers that very question. The first part builds on a previous Geek Guide, Beyond Cron, and briefly describes how to know when it might be time to consider upgrading your job scheduling infrastructure. The second part presents an actual planning and implementation framework.
Join Linux Journal's Mike Diehl and Pat Cameron of Help Systems.
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With all the industry talk about the benefits of Linux on Power and all the performance advantages offered by its open architecture, you may be considering a move in that direction. If you are thinking about analytics, big data and cloud computing, you would be right to evaluate Power. The idea of using commodity x86 hardware and replacing it every three years is an outdated cost model. It doesn’t consider the total cost of ownership, and it doesn’t consider the advantage of real processing power, high-availability and multithreading like a demon.
This ebook takes a look at some of the practical applications of the Linux on Power platform and ways you might bring all the performance power of this open architecture to bear for your organization. There are no smoke and mirrors here—just hard, cold, empirical evidence provided by independent sources. I also consider some innovative ways Linux on Power will be used in the future.Get the Guide