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(tool, file format)
("Shell archive", after ar and tar) Any of the many Unix programs that creates a flattened representation of one or more files, with the unique property that it can be unflattened (the original files extracted) merely by feeding it through a standard Unix shell. The output of shar, known as a "shar file" or "sharchive", can be distributed to anyone running Unix, and no special unpacking software is required.

Sharchives are intriguing in that they are typically created by shell scripts; the script that produces sharchives is thus a script which produces self-unpacking scripts, which may themselves contain scripts. The disadvantage of sharchives are that they are an ideal venue for Trojan horse attacks and that, for recipients not running Unix, no simple un-sharchiving program is possible; sharchives can and do make use of arbitrarily-powerful shell features and other Unix commands.

Different implementations of shar vary in sophistication. Some just uuencode each input file and output commands to uudecode the result, others include extensive checking to make sure the files have been transferred without corruption and that all parts of a multi-file sharchive have been unpacked.

The unshar utility strips off mail and news headers before passing the remainder of its input to sh.
References in periodicals archive ?
Allah Wadhayo Shar and Ghulam Hussain sustained bullet injuries in the incident.
I was brought up with boxers and fell into the shar pei rescue side of things by accident.
Roma Brooks, founder of Shar Pei Rescue, has lodged a claim at Hamilton Sheriff Court demanding the dog and four puppies are handed over to her.
Shar said the only way to end the 22-month old crisis was a "historic settlement" and the formation of a national unity government.
But, Taliban spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, claimed they attacked the fuel tankers, torching eight of them on the outskirts of Maidan Shar on Tuesday.
Running back up to my room, I climbed out the shattered window onto the gutter and down-climbed the security grill covering the clothing shop that occupies the retail space at street level, before running across Shar e Naw Street to take cover behind a brick column in the wrought iron fence that surround Shar e Naw Park next to the ANP firing down the street.
Advances in battlefield medicine helped him survive, and 100 years of experience caring for wounded warriors helps Walter Reed Army Medical Center provide Shar and other patients with the best health care and rehabilitation technologies available.
JOINT PROTEST: Heather and Shar Picture: JOHNNY GREEN
IT looks like Britney Spears' hubby Kevin Federline has buried the hatchet with his ex, Shar Jackson.
Britney Spears' hubby's ex, Shar Jackson, insists she is delighted Brit is pregnant.
Shar Music has introduced the German-made Otto Ernst Fischer Double Bass, which accommodates any playing style from orchestral to jazz.
Ten-week-old Blue Bell is the first pup from a pure Blue Shar Pei litter ever born in Britain.