Provided by: libarchive-dev_3.1.2-7ubuntu2_amd64 bug

NAME

     libarchive — functions for reading and writing streaming archives

OVERVIEW

     The libarchive library provides a flexible interface for reading and writing archives in
     various formats such as tar and cpio.  libarchive also supports reading and writing archives
     compressed using various compression filters such as gzip and bzip2.  The library is
     inherently stream-oriented; readers serially iterate through the archive, writers serially
     add things to the archive.  In particular, note that there is currently no built-in support
     for random access nor for in-place modification.

     When reading an archive, the library automatically detects the format and the compression.
     The library currently has read support for:
        old-style tar archives,
        most variants of the POSIX “ustar” format,
        the POSIX “pax interchange” format,
        GNU-format tar archives,
        most common cpio archive formats,
        ISO9660 CD images (including RockRidge and Joliet extensions),
        Zip archives,
        ar archives (including GNU/SysV and BSD extensions),
        Microsoft CAB archives,
        LHA archives,
        mtree file tree descriptions,
        RAR archives,
        XAR archives.
     The library automatically detects archives compressed with gzip(1), bzip2(1), xz(1),
     lzip(1), or compress(1) and decompresses them transparently.  It can similarly detect and
     decode archives processed with uuencode(1) or which have an rpm(1) header.

     When writing an archive, you can specify the compression to be used and the format to use.
     The library can write
        POSIX-standard “ustar” archives,
        POSIX “pax interchange format” archives,
        POSIX octet-oriented cpio archives,
        Zip archive,
        two different variants of shar archives,
        ISO9660 CD images,
        7-Zip archives,
        ar archives,
        mtree file tree descriptions,
        XAR archives.
     Pax interchange format is an extension of the tar archive format that eliminates essentially
     all of the limitations of historic tar formats in a standard fashion that is supported by
     POSIX-compliant pax(1) implementations on many systems as well as several newer
     implementations of tar(1).  Note that the default write format will suppress the pax
     extended attributes for most entries; explicitly requesting pax format will enable those
     attributes for all entries.

     The read and write APIs are accessed through the archive_read_XXX() functions and the
     archive_write_XXX() functions, respectively, and either can be used independently of the
     other.

     The rest of this manual page provides an overview of the library operation.  More detailed
     information can be found in the individual manual pages for each API or utility function.

READING AN ARCHIVE

     See libarchive_read(3).

WRITING AN ARCHIVE

     See libarchive_write(3).

WRITING ENTRIES TO DISK

     The archive_write_disk(3) API allows you to write archive_entry(3) objects to disk using the
     same API used by archive_write(3).  The archive_write_disk(3) API is used internally by
     archive_read_extract(); using it directly can provide greater control over how entries get
     written to disk.  This API also makes it possible to share code between archive-to-archive
     copy and archive-to-disk extraction operations.

READING ENTRIES FROM DISK

     The archive_read_disk(3) supports for populating archive_entry(3) objects from information
     in the filesystem.  This includes the information accessible from the stat(2) system call as
     well as ACLs, extended attributes, and other metadata.  The archive_read_disk(3) API also
     supports iterating over directory trees, which allows directories of files to be read using
     an API compatible with the archive_read(3) API.

DESCRIPTION

     Detailed descriptions of each function are provided by the corresponding manual pages.

     All of the functions utilize an opaque struct archive datatype that provides access to the
     archive contents.

     The struct archive_entry structure contains a complete description of a single archive
     entry.  It uses an opaque interface that is fully documented in archive_entry(3).

     Users familiar with historic formats should be aware that the newer variants have eliminated
     most restrictions on the length of textual fields.  Clients should not assume that
     filenames, link names, user names, or group names are limited in length.  In particular, pax
     interchange format can easily accommodate pathnames in arbitrary character sets that exceed
     PATH_MAX.

RETURN VALUES

     Most functions return ARCHIVE_OK (zero) on success, non-zero on error.  The return value
     indicates the general severity of the error, ranging from ARCHIVE_WARN, which indicates a
     minor problem that should probably be reported to the user, to ARCHIVE_FATAL, which
     indicates a serious problem that will prevent any further operations on this archive.  On
     error, the archive_errno() function can be used to retrieve a numeric error code (see
     errno(2)).  The archive_error_string() returns a textual error message suitable for display.

     archive_read_new() and archive_write_new() return pointers to an allocated and initialized
     struct archive object.

     archive_read_data() and archive_write_data() return a count of the number of bytes actually
     read or written.  A value of zero indicates the end of the data for this entry.  A negative
     value indicates an error, in which case the archive_errno() and archive_error_string()
     functions can be used to obtain more information.

ENVIRONMENT

     There are character set conversions within the archive_entry(3) functions that are impacted
     by the currently-selected locale.

SEE ALSO

     tar(1), archive_entry(3), archive_read(3), archive_util(3), archive_write(3), tar(5)

HISTORY

     The libarchive library first appeared in FreeBSD 5.3.

AUTHORS

     The libarchive library was originally written by Tim Kientzle <kientzle@acm.org>.

BUGS

     Some archive formats support information that is not supported by struct archive_entry.
     Such information cannot be fully archived or restored using this library.  This includes,
     for example, comments, character sets, or the arbitrary key/value pairs that can appear in
     pax interchange format archives.

     Conversely, of course, not all of the information that can be stored in an struct
     archive_entry is supported by all formats.  For example, cpio formats do not support
     nanosecond timestamps; old tar formats do not support large device numbers.

     The ISO9660 reader cannot yet read all ISO9660 images; it should learn how to seek.

     The AR writer requires the client program to use two passes, unlike all other libarchive
     writers.