Interpreting output from rsync

Matt McCutchen hashproduct+rsync at
Tue Oct 2 03:00:42 GMT 2007

On 10/1/07, Suresh Govindachar <sgovindachar at> wrote:
>   In regard to output, rsync has the following features:

>   Where can I find an explanation of the format, content
>   and interpretation of the outputs (a-e)?

>       a) -v option with various levels of verbosity

Roughly, here is what is printed with each number of -v options.
Errors are printed regardless of -v.

0: messages indicating that rsync might not be doing everything the
user expected (e.g., "skipping directory foo/")
1: the name of each file as it is transferred; messages at various
"significant" stages of rsync's operation
2: the name of each file as it is transferred, or the reason why rsync
isn't transferring it; more detail about what rsync is doing and why
(e.g., what filter caused each file to be included or excluded)
3+: debugging information about both rsync's internal operation and
its interactions with the OS

>       b) --stats

See the description of --stats in the rsync man page for a list of the
statistics printed and what they mean.

>       c) --log-file=foo

This makes rsync write a line to "foo" describing what it did to each
file.  You can control the format of the lines using
--log-file-format; see its description in the rsync man page.

>       d) messages rsync prints to stdout
>       e) messages rsync prints to stderr.

In general, errors go to stderr and information (governed by -v as
above) goes to stdout.  The messages are meant to be self-explanatory,
so no one has bothered to make a list of all the messages and their
meanings.  If you get a specific message you don't understand, first
search for it in the man page and Google; then if you don't find an
explanation or need additional clarification, feel free to ask on the
mailing list.


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