The first part of this chapter introduces you to various terms that will
recur throughout the book. It also tells you who has worked on GNU tar
and its documentation, and where you should send bug reports
The second chapter is a tutorial (see Tutorial) which provides a
gentle introduction for people who are new to using tar. It is
meant to be self contained, not requiring any reading from subsequent
chapters to make sense. It moves from topic to topic in a logical,
progressive order, building on information already explained.
Although the tutorial is paced and structured to allow beginners to
learn how to use tar, it is not intended solely for beginners.
The tutorial explains how to use the three most frequently used
operations (‘create’, ‘list’, and ‘extract’) as well as
two frequently used options (‘file’ and ‘verbose’). The other
chapters do not refer to the tutorial frequently; however, if a section
discusses something which is a complex variant of a basic concept, there
may be a cross reference to that basic concept. (The entire book,
including the tutorial, assumes that the reader understands some basic
concepts of using a Unix-type operating system; see Tutorial.)
The third chapter presents the remaining five operations, and
information about using tar options and option syntax.
The other chapters are meant to be used as a
reference. Each chapter presents everything that needs to be said
about a specific topic.
One of the chapters (see Date input formats) exists in its
entirety in other GNU manuals, and is mostly self-contained.
In addition, one section of this manual (see Standard) contains a
big quote which is taken directly from tar sources.
In general, we give both long and short (abbreviated) option names
at least once in each section where the relevant option is covered, so
that novice readers will become familiar with both styles. (A few
options have no short versions, and the relevant sections will
Published under the terms of the GNU General Public License