"non-efficient" sparse file copying with rsync

grarpamp grarpamp at gmail.com
Sun Jul 3 02:28:56 MDT 2011

> The question is whether it is possible to copy sparse files as sparse, but
> to preserve the original file size? By file size I mean the size, that a
> file actually occupies on file system as reported by "du --block-size=1
> FILE". The apparent size is always the same.

If supported by your platform, also try: ls -l -s

This may be related to the scanning block size rsync uses to determine
if sparseness exists, or to write such a file. Maybe, I'm not quite sure of
my thinking on this, I'm usually wrong.

However, I do know there is a 'bug' filed regarding a large performance
lag when copying sparse files with rsync. Just search bugzilla for 'sparse'.
Since you're copying big files, it's something to be aware of until further
characterized or fixed.

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