ok - i read the fine cp manual page and now think that preserving ownership details etc are part of cp. However i am still confused as many of the notes in the manual page refer to topics I know nothing about.
I would use the tar pipe of old as I expect it to build a proper copy in the new location.
Having read the cp manual page again (and again) I fear my confidence in tar might be misplaced :(.
Anyone know of a tutorial for each of the cp options?