DO NOT REPLY [Bug 4079] New: rsync fails with --inplace, --link-dest and --no-whole-file

samba-bugs at samba-bugs at
Mon Sep 4 15:22:18 GMT 2006

           Summary: rsync fails with --inplace, --link-dest and --no-whole-
           Product: rsync
           Version: 2.6.8
          Platform: x86
        OS/Version: Linux
            Status: NEW
          Severity: major
          Priority: P3
         Component: core
        AssignedTo: wayned at
        ReportedBy: roger at
         QAContact: rsync-qa at

System: Debian sarge (x86) with a locally compiled 2.6.8 version of rsync with
the ACL patches applied.  Kernel updated to

The command below fails if there is a reference file in "/tmp/test/b" that is
slightly different to the file in "/tmp/test/a" and the destination file does
not exist in "/tmp/test/c".

rsync -a --no-whole-file --inplace --link-dest=/tmp/test/b tmp/test/a/

If rsync is run with -vvvv, the RSYNC algorithm appears to run correctly and
determine the blocks in the file that are missing.  Unfortunately, only the
changed data is written to the file in "/tmp/test/c/" and the rest of the file
is zeros. 

I suspect this is because an empty destination file is created when the file
doesn't exist rather than hard-linking the destination file to the link-dest
file before performing the in-place copy.

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