Red Hat Bugzilla – Bug 150584
sysreport does not properly handle sparse files
Last modified: 2007-11-30 17:07:06 EST
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User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux i686; en-US; rv:1.7.5) Gecko/20041215 Firefox/1.0 Red Hat/1.0-12.EL4
Description of problem:
When sysreport attempts to tar a directory that contains sparse files that appear much larger than they are (have data at high addresses), such as core files, it does not use 'tar -S' to handle the sparse files efficiently. Tar will attempt to create several-gigabyte files even though the actual data may only be kilobytes in size. Observed on RHEL 3 U2, though the changelog shows no changes that should have an impact on this behavior.
Version-Release number of selected component (if applicable):
Steps to Reproduce:
1. Create sparse files with data at high addresses in directories that sysreport collects
2. run sysreport
Actual Results: tar attempts to create huge tar files, takes a very long time to run, and possibly runs out of memory and/or disk space
Expected Results: tar should have been invoked with the -S flag, and the sparse files should be included in an efficient manner.
While there is an easy workaround (separately collecting and deleting sparse files prior to running sysreport), users may not be aware of why sysreport is failing. Since sysreport is typically run on already troubled systems, this may mislead debugging attempts. I'm classifying this as Normal severity, since the workaround, while simple, is not obvious to many users.
*** This bug has been marked as a duplicate of 156858 ***