Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have a large .tgz file which is of very large size(19GB). I started the untar operation in vmware last night but in the morning, I saw a blue screen of death. I dont want to waste time on untarring the files that are already done(5GB). How do I untar the files that are not yet untarred into the same folder without wasting time on 5GB.


share|improve this question

From the man page for tar:

-k, --keep-old-files

keep existing files; don't overwrite them from archive

I also recommend (if applicable):


do not overwrite files which are newer than the archive

Therefore, you probably want something like this:

tar -zx -v -k --keep-newer-files -f yourbigtar.tgz
share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.