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What is the .TAR File Extension?

.TAR File Extension Description:

The .tar file extension is derived from the words "Tape Archive", and is used to collect sets of files as one for archive and distribution. This format was developed under the GNU Operating System and standardized by Portable Operating System Interface, or POSIX.

Files with the .tar extension were originally designed in raw format used for backing up tapes and other devices with sequential access. TAR files have no built-in compression features, and are used to archive files with external compression utilities, such as "bzip2" and "gzip".

The .tar file extension is not strictly used to define a TAR archive file, but is used as a conventional or default naming system. Since TAR files are not compressed, the utility for compression used add a suffix native to it and can end in file extensions such as ".tar.Z", ".tar.bz2", and ".tar.gz".

TAR files are made up of a series of blocks that contain 'blocksize' bytes; and are represented by header blocks, followed by the rest of the blocks which contain the contents of the file. The header block is placed before each file in the archive and contains a corresponding metadata. This metadata is encoded in ASCII so that portability across different operating platforms is ensured. A TAR file's metadata consists of file names, checksum information, and statistics - all of which are used by the Tar program to detect archive information and if there are any file corruptions.

TAR files use arguments, referred as operations and options, which specify the actions it will have on its archives. The three most used operations on TAR files are create (creating a TAR file), list (listing the contents of a TAR file), and extract (extracting files from a TAR file/archive). For options, there are two that are most used - file and verbose. The file option specifies the name of a TAR file that will be worked on; and the verbose option shows files being archived while the TAR file is still in use.

Author: GNU
Author URL:
Related Applications: Allume Systems Stuffit Expander:, WinZip:, Tar
Common Path: n/a


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What Causes .TAR files Errors to Occur?

Upon receiving errors with .TAR files you are potential having a critical Windows file system error - your error can be the result of corruption to your program registry and you should act to correct it immediately to prevent additional damage to your operating system. Dangers include device failure, blue screen errors and fatal crashes.

.TAR files Errors - Common Symptoms:

.TAR files error symptoms include software crashes, start up or shut down troubles, slow personal computer operation, laggy behaviour, input freezing, internal speaker beeps, trouble saving documents as well as errors during software installation.

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