Facebook Looking To Add Zstd Support To The Linux Kernel, Btrfs

Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel on 4 August 2017 at 05:48 PM EDT. 45 Comments
Zstd (also known as Zstandard) is a lossless data compression developed by Facebook that has been open-source since last year. This BSD-licensed compression algorithm aims to offer compression similar to zip/gzip but with faster speeds both for compression and decompression. Facebook developers are now looking at adding this support to the Linux kernel.

Nick Terrell of Facebook has proposed adding xxhash and zstd compression/decompression support to the Linux kernel. Beyond adding the new zstd compress/decompress module, there's support added to Btrfs and SquashFS for their native file-system compression support. In regards to xxhash, it's a non-crypto hashing algorithm for checksumming and is used by zstd.

The patch series goes into more detail about zstd for the Linux kernel, including benchmarks. The Btrfs results certainly looking promising for Zstd compression as an alternative to LZO and Zlib.

Terrell had wrote about the zstd performance potential, "zstd offers a wide varity of compression speed and quality trade-offs. It can compress at speeds approaching lz4, and quality approaching lzma. zstd decompressions at speeds more than twice as fast as zlib, and decompression speed remains roughly the same across all compression levels."
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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