use gtar and not tar under solaris

Christian Maeder Christian.Maeder at
Thu Aug 6 14:54:49 EDT 2009

Matthias Kilian wrote:
> On Thu, Aug 06, 2009 at 12:30:51PM +0100, Duncan Coutts wrote:
>>> I've just been informed that unpacking the binary (i386) solaris
>>> distribution using bunzip2 and tar:
>> It may work better in future if you use a non-GNU tar to pack it up in
>> the first place. GNU tar uses a non-standard tar format by default.
>> Solaris tar would likely have more luck unpacking a POSIX/USTAR tar
>> format file. It's also possible to use gnu tar to make standard tar
>> format files, using --format ustar rather than gnu tar's default of
>> --format gnu.
> Is there something like pax(1) available on solaris? If so, it
> should be be preferred, because it's a POSIX tool, so there's some
> hope that it behaves the same on different systems.

Yes, pax is available under solaris. I thought GNU tar is the standard
packer under unix. (The usage message of pax is less clear.)

Below is a part of "gtar --help"

Cheers Christian

 Archive format selection:

  -H, --format=FORMAT        create archive of the given format.

 FORMAT is one of the following:

    gnu                      GNU tar 1.13.x format
    oldgnu                   GNU format as per tar <= 1.12
    pax                      POSIX 1003.1-2001 (pax) format
    posix                    Same as pax
    ustar                    POSIX 1003.1-1988 (ustar) format
    v7                       old V7 tar format

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