Should no-tweak mode become the default?

Wayne Davison wayned at
Sat May 10 06:25:10 GMT 2008

On Thu, May 08, 2008 at 09:34:07PM -0400, Matt McCutchen wrote:
> This is to continue my discussion with Carl [...] about whether
> no-tweak mode should become rsync's default when --inplace is not
> specified.

I completely reject this idea.  The --inplace option is all about data
updating, not attribute updating.  Most of the time when I'm copying
things, I want rsync to modify file attributes in-place, and I almost
never want it to modify a file's content in-place.  So joining those
two disparate things into a single option would be counter productive.

I also don't want to change the default because most of the time when a
user is using rsync ad-hoc, it is not being used for a backup.  When it
is, the command has usually been setup in a script that we can expect
to have been configured with the right options.  So, I think changing
rsync's default would inconvenience users.

Rsync currently supports the full preservation of attributes in an
incremental-backup scenario by copying into an empty hierarchy of files
using one of the --*-dest options (usually --link-dest).  Anything
different is a method of copying that rsync does not currently support
(without an extra patch that adds an additional option).  It's not that
unreasonable to want to do this, but at the moment if you're using link-
dest into a directory of existing files, you're telling rsync that you
care more about disk space and less about the history of file
attributes (which is a choice that some folks have made when doing


More information about the rsync mailing list