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file format ("Tape ARchive", following ar) Unix's
general purpose archive utility and the file format it uses.
Tar was originally intended for use with magnetic tape but,
though it has several command line options related to tape,
it is now used more often for packaging files together on
other media, e.g. for distribution via the Internet.
The resulting archive, a "tar file" (humourously, "tarball")
is often compressed, using gzip or some other form of
compression (see tar and feather).