Understanding the basics of file compression

At present, there are so many archive formats that the user simply does not know what to choose from and this leads to a lot of confusion. Although archives with the extension zip and rar are present everywhere, the ordinary user cannot tell the difference between them. Additionally, the files downloaded from the Internet have different compression formats according to the type of operating system. The necessity of compression is not immediately evident for the ordinary user, but there are multiple hidden benefits to data compression. For starters, you can save considerable space on the computer by using the best file compressor, but not only. The question is the following: how does it work?


File compressor utility

A file compressor is basically a type of software that is used in order to compress or decompress computer directories of various formats. By compression it is understood the process of reducing the size of the document up to about 40 percent less, while at the same time preserving the initial quality. This means that nothing is lost during the process. The user ends up with a copy, in other words a version that contains the exact same data as the original one. Not only will it occupy less space on the disk, but you will be able to transfer it easier to transfer it over the Internet. The software has to scan the item and works by identifying the patterns of repetition. This comes in handy in certain situations such as scanning in which the computer creates up to thousands of files of the same format every day. They are archived in order to occupy less space.

Popular archive formats

Archives are very popular owing to their ability of storing multiple computer files together with the metadata. They are mostly used in order to store various contents such as pictures or documents in a single place. In other words, the archive acts as a single directory and consequently can be sent easier as e-mail attachments while using fewer bites. The most frequent archive formats that the user is likely to encounter are ZIP and RAR. The difference between them is that they are designed for specific tasks. Generally speaking, the ZIP format is supported by most operating systems such as Windows and Mac. It supports lossless compression and can contain more than one folder. On the other hand, the RAR archive also supports error recovery and spanning and it is recommended for encrypting important information. The only drawback is that RAR requires an additional program because it is not supported by most operating systems and can be rejected by most users.

Advantages of file compression

The first advantage is that the directory structure is significantly reduced in size, in other words the number of bites and data is decreased. The data that is not needed for the functioning of the directory is eliminated by analyzing the redundancies that are present. After condensation the user is able to delete the original directories. Moreover, size is important when downloading software from the Internet. Archives also promote confidentiality in the sense that the user is able to set a password to the directory and thus protect its contents.