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iTar 1.2

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Screenshots of iTar

iTar Editor's Review

iTar is a frontend for various common UNIX packaging algorithms.

The program features support for compression types like: gzip, bzip2, and Z UNIX compression. It can also package tarballs without any kind of compression.

The 'Options' button drops a menu which allows you to pick the TAR archive format. You can chose one of the available options: GNU TAR 1.13 which is the default item, GNU TAR 1.12 and previous, TAR V7, POSIX 1003.1-1988 (ustar), and POSIX 1003-2001 (posix pax).

If you set up the application as you wish, which is pretty easy, then you can drop files or folders onto the iTar's drop zone in order to start the packaging process. The application has a weird behavior after dropping something on it, it makes the Desktop unresponsive for a few seconds.

Another drawback is the fact that it doesn't have any kind of progress bar. You can't cancel the creation process. Another thing that might be disturbing is the fact that it overwrites an existing archive without asking for a confirmation.

I did a stress test with all of the supported archive types. You can check the results in the screenshots. Since it doesn't provide any kind of settings for the compression strength, the output was the best that you can get from iTar for the provided input directory. The bzip2 algorithm had the best result, quite close to the RAR compression, but the archiving process takes more time if you use bzip2.

Pluses: it provides an easy to use interface. It also provides support for multiple archive types.

Drawbacks / flaws: it doesn't have a progress bar, and a 'cancel' button. It overwrites the existing archives automatically without asking for confirmation. It also has a weird behavior after dragging something onto its interface. Sometimes it may visibly slow down your Mac, even though it doesn't completely load the multi-core CPUs.

In conclusion: this is a very useful tool if you don't like to use the Terminal in order to obtain the same result. If you would like to test another frontend with close functionality, you may try CleanArchiver.

version reviewed: 1.2

iTar Publisher's Description

iTar is an archive compression utility. Technically it is a GNU tar frontend. You can drag and drop a file or folder into the application to archive. You can also compress data using gzip, bzip2 or unix compress.

iTar is a freeware and open-source universal binary cocoa-applescript application.

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