How can I create a multipart tar file in Linux?


3 Answers 3


You can use the split command to split an archive in to multiple files. For example, if I wanted my archive stored in 1 MByte files:

tar -cvf - <stuff to put in archive> | split --bytes=1m --suffix-length=4 --numeric-suffix - myarchive.tar.

And when I want to recombine and untar:

cat myarchive.tar.* | tar xvf -
  • 1
    in gnu split, --numeric-suffixes is the param.
    – Kevin
    Nov 23, 2016 at 5:00

GNU Tar natively supports multiple volumes. There are many options, the one I found neat was

tar --create --multi-volume --file=/tmp/file1.tar --file=/tmp/file2.tar files_to_archive 

size can be specified via -L (tape-length)

It does not support compression in this manner however, so you would have to seperately do that. "tar: Cannot use multi-volume compressed archives"


Use tar c to create the tar archive, and specify the k size-in-kbytes parameter to control the maximum size of each part. You'll end up with ((original size)/(part size) + 1) parts.


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