a fast, versatile, remote (and local) file-copying tool
-a, --archive This is equivalent to -rlptgoD. It is a quick way of saying you want recursion and want to preserve almost everything (with -H being a notable omission). The only exception to the above equivalence is when --files-from is specified, in which case -r is not implied. Note that -a does not preserve hardlinks, because finding multiply-linked files is expensive. You must separately specify -H.