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rdiffdir - compute and apply signatures and diffs to directories


rdiffdir [options] sig[nature] basis_dir signature_file

rdiffdir [options] delta full_sigtar {incr_sigtar} new_dir delta_file

rdiffdir [options] patch basis_dir delta_file

rdiffdir [options] tar basis_dir


If signature_file or delta_file are "-", the data will be read from stdin or written to stdout as appropriate.


rdiffdir is supposed to be like rdiff, but can operate on directories. See rdiff(1) for more information. The syntax is similar.

Regarding the delta command, the full_sigtar operand is a signature_file written by an earlier signature or tar command (the latter using the --write-sig-to option). The optional incr_sigtar operands are signature files written by earlier delta commands using the --write-sig-to option. This way the Nth invocation of the delta command can parse (and extend) the signature chain that has been founded by the first signature or tar command with a full signature, and then extended by the subsequent N-1 delta invocations with incremental signatures. It is the responsibility of the user to specify the sigtar operands in logical increment order.


--write-sig-to sigfile
This option is only used in delta and tar modes. When specified, rdiffdir will write a signature of the directory it is processing to sigfile. The end result will be a delta and a new signature calculated over the same data.

-z, --gzip-compress
Enable gzip compression and decompression of signature and delta files.

Selection Options

In signature and delta modes, rdiffdir accepts duplicity-like selection options including --exclude, --exclude-filelist, etc. See the duplicity(1) manual page for more information.


Hard links are currently unsupported (they will be treated as non-linked regular files).

Bad signatures will be treated as empty instead of logging appropriate error message.


Original Author - Ben Escoto <>
Current Maintainer - Kenneth Loafman <>
Continuous Contributors
Edgar Soldin, Mike Terry

Also we’d like to thank everybody posting issues to the mailing list or on launchpad, sending in patches or contributing otherwise. Duplicity wouldn’t be as stable and useful if it weren’t for you.

A special thanks goes to, a Cloud Storage provider with explicit support for duplicity, for several monetary donations and for providing a special "duplicity friends" rate for their offsite backup service. Email for details.

See Also

duplicity(1) , python(1) , rdiff(1) , rdiff-backup(1) .

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