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SQFSCAT(1) User Commands SQFSCAT(1)


sqfscat - tool to cat files from a squashfs filesystem to stdout


sqfscat [OPTIONS] FILESYSTEM [list of files to cat to stdout]


Squashfs is a highly compressed read-only filesystem for Linux. It uses either gzip/xz/lzo/lz4/zstd compression to compress both files, inodes and directories. Inodes in the system are very small and all blocks are packed to minimise data overhead. Block sizes greater than 4K are supported up to a maximum of 1Mbytes (default block size 128K).

Squashfs is intended for general read-only filesystem use, for archival use (i.e. in cases where a .tar.gz file may be used), and in constrained block device/memory systems (e.g. embedded systems) where low overhead is needed.


print version, licence and copyright information.
use NUMBER processors. By default will use the number of processors available.
skip BYTES at start of FILESYSTEM. Optionally a suffix of K, M or G can be given to specify Kbytes, Mbytes or Gbytes respectively (default 0 bytes).
treat errors writing files to stdout as non-fatal.
treat all errors as fatal.
don't set exit code (to nonzero) on non-fatal errors.
set data queue to SIZE Mbytes. Default 256 Mbytes.
set fragment queue to SIZE Mbytes. Default 256 Mbytes.
do not use wildcard matching in filenames.
treat filenames as POSIX regular expressions rather than use the default shell wildcard expansion (globbing).
output options text to stdout.


gzip, lzo, lz4, xz, zstd, lzma


The file or files were output to stdout OK.
FATAL errors occurred, e.g. filesystem corruption, I/O errors. Sqfscat did not continue and aborted.
Non-fatal errors occurred, e.g. not a regular file, or failed to resolve pathname. Sqfscat continued and did not abort.

See -ignore-errors, -strict-errors and -no-exit-code options for how they affect the exit status.


Output the contents of "hello" to stdout.
Output the contents of "hello" and then "world" to stdout.
Output the contents of all the files in the root directory that match the wildcard *.[ch], to stdout, e.g. hello.c, hello.h, world.c, world.h.

Note: when passing wildcarded names to Sqfscat, they should be quoted (as in the above examples), to ensure that they are not processed by the shell.


Written by Phillip Lougher <>


Copyright © 2022 Phillip Lougher <>

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.


mksquashfs(1), unsquashfs(1), sqfstar(1)

The README for the Squash-tools 4.5.1 release, describing the new features can be read here

The Squashfs-tools USAGE guide can be read here

March 2022 sqfscat version 4.5.1