SUSE Conversations


Extraction Tool : xe



By: coolguys

February 7, 2006 12:00 am

Reads:123

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Applies to:

  • SUSE Linux 10.0
  • SUSE Linux Professional 9.2-9.3
  • Novell Linux Desktop 9
  • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9

PROBLEM: Do you support commandline linux users who sometimes get into a muddle uncompressing and extracting archives?
Perhaps they tend to forget the -f switch needed when working on a tar file. Even a seasoned administrator, for whom the commandline is second nature, can sometimes forget an obscure option.

SOLUTION: Enter Markus Gaugusch’s lovely little script, xe (which stands for eXtract Everywhere). This simple script passes all the correct options for extracting files (with the directory structure intact) a multitude of archive and compression formats. All the usual archive types encountered under linux are supported – tar, gz, tgz, bz and zip, as well as some of the more obscure formats.

EXAMPLE: Installing xe couldn’t be simpler. Download the rpm from http://gaugusch.at/linuxtools/xe.shtml or from a commandline, enter the following commands:

    linux$ wget http://gaugusch.at/linuxtools/download/xe-0.1-0.noarch.rpm
    linux$ su
    password: [enter your root password here]
    linux$ rpm -ivh xe-0.1-0.noarch.rpm

Using xe is a breeze. No options are required by default – xe archive_name.tgz will uncompress and extract archive_name.tgz into the current directory, preserving any directory structure found in the archive. The only possible switches are xe -v , which increases verbosity (if you want to see any debug messages) and xe -v /path/to/dir patch.bz2 will extract patch.bz2 to /path/to/dir . There is a simple man page and xe -h (or xe –help) gives a simple syntax guide.

More information can be found at http://gaugusch.at/linuxtools/xe.shtml.

Don’t be alarmed by the fact that it is an 0.1 version – it’s low version number just shows that very few changes have been needed since it was released in 2002. The author has commented to me that “I had planned to make it support more archive types and have better error handling, but it never failed for me and I think nobody else wrote me a complaint.”

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Disclaimer: As with everything else at SUSE Conversations, this content is definitely not supported by SUSE (so don't even think of calling Support if you try something and it blows up).  It was contributed by a community member and is published "as is." It seems to have worked for at least one person, and might work for you. But please be sure to test, test, test before you do anything drastic with it.

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