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Bzip2 To See Revival Under New Maintainership, Experimental Porting To Rust

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  • Bzip2 To See Revival Under New Maintainership, Experimental Porting To Rust

    Phoronix: Bzip2 To See Revival Under New Maintainership, Experimental Porting To Rust

    While Bzip2 compression is still widely used by Linux systems, it hasn't seen an official update since 2010 and has rather stagnated as different Linux distributions have resorted to carrying their own patches and other maintenance work on this long used data compression tool. But now there is a new maintainer looking to take Bzip2 into the next decade...

    http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...2-Revival-2019

  • #2
    Seems like a very good candidate for a rust port. And good to see official maintenance of such a critical piece of software. Thx Frederico!

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    • #3
      Now if someone can update p7zip to the latest release. Linux version is stuck at 16 when the general 7zip version is at 19.

      The enhancements missing in the Linux version are growing, especially in performance improvements, threading and the use of extended CPU capabilities.

      What would be a reasonable bounty to advertise to have someone recompile v19 for Linux and include both x86-64 & ARM v8? Since POWER is not generally accessible at the moment, I don't think it would be reasonable to ask anyone other than Talos.

      I was about to ping a group of university com sci students to see if they would do it as an academic project.



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      • #4
        I came here for the Rust comments

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        • #5
          Originally posted by treba View Post
          Seems like a very good candidate for a rust port. And good to see official maintenance of such a critical piece of software. Thx Frederico!
          it's obsolete though, more modern compression algorithms, are either way faster, or compress better, maybe the new development time is better spend elsewhere.

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          • #6
            bzip2 is dead, I mean feature-complete. There's nothing left to improve or change.

            Most sane people have long migrated to LZMA2 based compressors (e.g. xz) which sport a much better compression ratio and a lot faster decompression. bzip2 sometimes compresses text better but given bzip2 pathetic dictionary (900KB) it only applies to small documents (less than ~20MB).

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            • #7
              In before weasel!

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              • #8
                Originally posted by rene View Post

                it's obsolete though, more modern compression algorithms, are either way faster, or compress better, maybe the new development time is better spend elsewhere.
                The point is that there's probably lot's of legacy software out there making use of it, so it's going to stay around for quite a while. Even more so there's data archives in that format, so we might need to keep it around for the next 50 years. Having a clean rewrite in safe rust while keeping API stability is a very sustainable effort here.

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                • #9
                  phoronix btw, Suricata 5 is also being slowly ported to Rust.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by birdie View Post
                    bzip2 is dead, I mean feature-complete. There's nothing left to improve or change.
                    It highly depends on your data. At work, we compress log files containing CAN data using bzip2. It's slow, granted, but as it's live data and the rate isn't too high, bzip2 is fast enough. Usually. The most important point, however, is, that the resulting files are smaller than for any other algo we tested. Even xz/lzma. If we need faster compression, we usually use zstandard.

                    So bzip2 _has_ it's niche and it's great that it's getting more traction again.

                    I even thought about trying to porting it to rust myself, so I'll see if I can contribute, if time permits.

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