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Re: [rdiff-backup-users] crash in gzip.py

From: Joe Steele
Subject: Re: [rdiff-backup-users] crash in gzip.py
Date: Sun, 13 Dec 2015 13:22:58 -0500
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; rv:38.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/38.3.0

On 12/13/2015 7:03 AM, Andrea Cozzolino wrote:
I have quite the same problem and in the *same* environment
(openSUSE 13.2/rdiff-backup 1.2.8).

I have a broken and, so far, unrecoverable backup store.

Each time I try to backup my home dir, I got a "Negative seek"
error while "Writing file object to

Traceback (most recent call last):
   File "/usr/lib64/python2.7/site-packages/rdiff_backup/rpath.py", line
97, in copyfileobj
     outputfp.seek(-1, os.SEEK_CUR)
   File "/usr/lib64/python2.7/gzip.py", line 423, in seek
     raise IOError('Negative seek in write mode')
IOError: Negative seek in write mode

The vanilla rdiff-backup 1.2.8 does not have "outputfp.seek(-1, os.SEEK_CUR)" on line 97 of rpath.py.

In looking at the packaging of rdiff-backup by openSUSE, I see that they incorporate several patches not included in the upstream source.

Their revision history can be found here:


One of their changes (which seems to be the source of your problem) was related to the handling of sparse files and was incorporated here:


Apparently, that was causing somebody to have same problem that you are having, and another patch was added:


Based on the line numbers in your log, it would appear that you do not have that second patch which was intended to fix the problem.

In looking at the openSUSE packages (http://software.opensuse.org/download.html?project=Archiving&package=rdiff-backup), it appears that openSUSE 13.2 contains rdiff-backup-1.2.8-42.3. It is also evident when looking at the source that revision 42.3 contains the second patch referenced above (and which you do not seem to have). So that would imply that you are not using their current revision(?).


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