Rsync - does it really do an *exact* copy?

Paul Slootman paul at
Mon May 29 15:55:03 GMT 2006

On Mon 29 May 2006, martin aa wrote:
> > 
> > I've just been busy with a new system, and I've been copying over the
> > root filesystem multiple times with rsync, without any such problems
> > whatsoever, so at least for me rsync works just fine for that task.
> Well, that is interesting.  I'm using FC5 and, by the looks of your domain name, you're using a debian-based distro.  So, I really can't work out what is happening here.  As I said in my original post, I can't see how it could be anything other than rsync doing this, but I just can't see how.  My understanding is that by using -aH you preserve absolutely everything.  Is there some type of file that rsync just can't accurately copy?

Perhaps extended attributes, if they're used in FC5? If so, I'd expect
the FC5 version of rsync to support those (although maybe you need an
extra option for that?)  Alternatively, some SE-Linux complications?
In other words, something's probably involved that's not "old school"

Paul Slootman

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