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Plan 9 - man page for ar (plan9 section 6)

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AR(6)											    AR(6)

       ar - archive (library) file format

       #include <ar.h>

       The  archive  command  ar(1) is used to combine several files into one.	Archives are used
       mainly as libraries to be searched by the loaders 2l(1) et al.

       A file produced by ar has a magic string at the start, followed by the constituent  files,
       each  preceded  by  a file header.  The magic number and header layout as described in the
       include file are:

	      #define ARMAG   "!<arch>\n"
	      #define SARMAG  8

	      #define ARFMAG  "`\n"

	      struct ar_hdr {
		      char    name[16];
		      char    date[12];
		      char    uid[6];
		      char    gid[6];
		      char    mode[8];
		      char    size[10];
		      char    fmag[2];
	      #define SAR_HDR 60

       The name is a blank-padded string.  The field contains to help verify the  presence  of	a
       header.	 The  other  fields  are  left-adjusted,  blank-padded numbers.  They are decimal
       except for which is octal.  The date is the modification date of the file (see stat(2)) at
       the  time  of its insertion into the archive.  The mode is the low 9 bits of the file per-
       mission mode.  The length of the header is Because the structure is padded in an architec-
       ture-dependent  manner,	the structure should never be read or written as a unit; instead,
       each field should be read or written independently.

       Each file begins on an even (0 mod 2) boundary; a newline is  inserted  between	files  if
       necessary.  Nevertheless size reflects the actual size of the file exclusive of padding.

       When all members of an archive are object files of the same architecture, ar automatically
       adds an extra file, named __.SYMDEF, as the first member of the archive.  This  file  con-
       tains  an index used by the loaders to locate all externally defined text and data symbols
       in the archive.

       There is no provision for empty areas in an archive file.

       ar(1), 2l(1), nm(1), stat(2)

       The uid and gid fields are unused in Plan 9.  They provide compatibility with Unix ar for-

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