Friday, April 11, 2008

Playing with Zippers

Recently, I've been made to do some research into finding a cheap (read: free) alternative to the now commonly used file compression utility, Winzip.
My company is trying to cut down on expenses and every little bit of savings helps. One of the things that we evaulated was whether we needed to keep buying new licenses for Winzip as new staff is added.

So I did some digging around and came across 7zip. This program is an open source file archiver with a high compression ratio. Aside from being free, this utility is apparently free to use in a commercial setting which means you can use it at work without violating the end-user license agreement. Certainly, we would be saving $50 per new work station.

More digging led to me to discover that Windows XP has it's own file compression tool. (I didn't know this because my station already had WinZip which I guess overrides the native zip utility). By doing a little research, I found out that this zip utility is based on a Winzip 7 codec. Basically, Microsoft licensed a watered down version of Winzip to use in XP.

The only catch to using the native MS Zip tool is that you can't control the compression level. If that doesn't bother you, then I don't see a point in getting another zipping program.
As for me, I'm lobbying for 7Zip. This monkey likes to have control on how much compression he can use.

That's all for now. ByteMonkey signing off...

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