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Steinar H. Gunderson and tklauser Detect old-style GNU headers correctly
Those appear in incremental archives and use the bytes that the
new-style headers use for the prefix field for other fields.

Patch authored by Steinar H. Gunderson.

Signed-off-by: Tobias Klauser <>
Latest commit 9c2e044 Jul 17, 2016
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doc Escape hyphens that should be minus signs in man pages. Jun 13, 2011
libtar .gitignore: ignore binaries and generated files Oct 25, 2013
NEWS Changed root to, which make autoreconf workable Jun 13, 2011
README Added autoconf instructions to README Dec 8, 2013
TODO libtar-1.2.11 tarball sources, taken from Debian's orig tar Apr 28, 2009 libtar version 1.2.20 Oct 9, 2013


libtar - C library for manipulating tar files

libtar is a library for manipulating tar files from within C programs.
Here are some of its features:

  * Handles both POSIX tar file format and the GNU extensions.
  * API provides functions for easy use, such as tar_extract_all().
  * Also provides functions for more granular use, such as 


To build libtar, ensure that autoconf and libtool are both installed on
your system, then run these commands:

   autoreconf --force --install
   make install

Encap Package Support

To build this software as an Encap package, you can pass the
--enable-encap option to configure.  This will be automatically
enabled if the epkg or mkencap programs are detected on the system,
but can be overridden by the --disable-encap option.

When building an Encap package, the configure script will automatically
adjust the installation prefix to use an appropriate Encap package
directory.  It does this using a heuristic algorithm which examines the
values of the ${ENCAP_SOURCE} and ${ENCAP_TARGET} environment variables
and the argument to configure's --prefix option.

If mkencap was detected on the system, it will be automatically run during
"make install".  By default, epkg will also be run, but this can be
inhibited with the --disable-epkg-install configure option.

For information on the Encap package management system, see the WSG
Encap Archive:

zlib Support

The configure script will attempt to find the zlib library on your system
for use with the libtar driver program.  The zlib package is available from:

If zlib is installed on your system, but you do not wish to use it,
specify the --without-zlib option when you invoke configure.

More Information

For documentation of the libtar API, see the enclosed manpages.  For more
information on the libtar package, see:

Source code for the latest version of libtar will be available there, as
well as Encap binary distributions for many common platforms.

Supported Platforms

I develop and test libtar on the following platforms:

   AIX 4.3.3 and 5.1
   HP-UX 11.00
   IRIX 6.5
   RedHat Linux 7.2
   Solaris 8 and 9

It should also build on the following platforms, but I do not actively
support them:

   AIX 3.2.5
   AIX 4.2.1
   HP-UX 10.20
   Solaris 2.5
   Solaris 2.6
   Solaris 7

If you successfully build libtar on another platform, please email me a
patch and/or configuration information.

Compatibility Code

libtar depends on some library calls which are not available or not
usable on some platforms.  To accomodate these systems, I've included
a version of these calls in the compat subdirectory.

I've slightly modified these functions for integration into this source
tree, but the functionality has not been modified from the original
source.  Please note that while this code should work for you, I didn't
write it, so please don't send me bug reports on it.


Feedback and bug reports are welcome.

Mark D. Roth <>
Campus Information Technologies and Educational Services
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

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