tar Syntax Help

Hornet hornetmadness at gmail.com
Fri Jul 8 12:29:47 GMT 2005

On 7/7/05, Drew Tomlinson <drew at mykitchentable.net> wrote:
> I'm trying to copy an entire file system while using an exclude file to
> avoid copying things such as /dev, /proc, etc.  I've read the man page
> and found the -X or --exclude-from tar option.  I've create a file
> called /exclude.list.  It contains lines such as:
> /exclude.list
> /dev
> /proc
> But I can't figure out how to form the correct command line.  I
> basically want to do this:
> tar -cvf - --exclude-from /exclude.list -C / . | tar xpf - -C .
> I've search the web and found examples that look similar to the above
> but this does not work for me.  tar attempts to copy /dev and I get all
> the associated errors.  I've tried other placements of either "-X", "X",
> and "--exclude from" on the command line various things happen from it
> just being ignored to tar thinking I want to create and archive named
> "-X", etc., to tar trying to add a file named "-X", etc. to the current
> archive.  I'm at a loss.
> I'm using 4.11 and trying to make a good backup before upgrading to
> 5.4.  Can anyone tell me the secret incantation to make this work?
> Thanks,
> Drew
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I wrote this years ago,

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