supporting HFS+ attributes and forks on a Linux rsync server?

David Feldman mailing-lists at
Mon Jun 23 01:15:32 GMT 2008

Any Mac folks out there able to comment? When I back up from a Mac to a 
Linux machine with the -X flag, what Mac-specific file info is retained 
or lost? Also, will I fare better using 2.6.3 and the -E flag or 3.0.2 
and the -X flag in that scenario?

Thanks again,

Matt McCutchen wrote:
> On Fri, 2008-06-20 at 10:32 -0700, David Feldman wrote: 
>>> You won't be able to preserve file flags and creation times since Linux
>>> doesn't have them.  On the other hand, rsync 3.0.2 with -X will preserve
>>> getxattr-style extended attributes (including resource forks, which Mac
>>> OS 10.4+ exposes as extended attributes); no patches are needed.
>> Thanks. Just to make sure I understand: I can compile a stock rsync 
>> 3.0.2 on the Linux box - no patches at all - and it will preserve all 
>> the Mac-specific data with -X, except for file flags and creation times? 
>> Is that correct?
> Not really.  -X preserves extended attributes via the getxattr/setxattr
> interface and does not cater specifically to the Mac.  However, the Mac
> filesystem exposes some kinds of Mac metadata as extended attributes, so
> -X will preserve these.  I know that resource forks are preserved this
> way, but more esoteric pieces of Mac metadata might not be.  Your best
> bet is to do a test and see if the metadata you need is preserved.
>> Also: what are file flags? Stuff like access control and locked? 
>> Anything else?
> I know they include the Finder "Locked" flag.  They may include other
> things, but I'm pretty sure they don't include Mac ACLs.
> You may be able to get better information from a Mac person.  (I don't
> have a Mac.)
> Matt

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