I'm trying to use tar and xz to make a compressed backup. The command I currently have is:

tar --exclude="/home/derpy/Desktop/WineGames" \
    --exclude="/home/derpy/.steam" \
    --exclude="/home/derpy/Desktop/wesnoth-dev/.git" \
    --exclude="/home/derpy/Desktop/wesnoth-dev/build" \
    --exclude="/home/derpy/Desktop/wesnoth-dev/data" \
    --exclude="." \
    --create \
    --to-stdout \
    --preserve-permissions \
    --ignore-failed-read \
    --directory="/" \
    etc home boot root usr/share | \
xz \
    --lzma2=preset=9e,dict=1536MiB,mf=bt4,mode=normal,nice=273,depth=1000 \
    --to-stdout > \
    "/media/PentaSet/Backups/"(date +"%m-%d-%Y@%I:%M:%S%p")".tar.xz"

However, for some reason when I run the command, the .steam directory is still being included in the output archive.


You are doing full path names on the --exclude but relative pathnames in the directories to tar up



Because you're specifing home the filename tar sees is home/derpy/.steam and not /home/derpy/.steam.

All of your exlcudes should use the filename that would match the name inside the tar file; eg home/derpy/.steam

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