Data compression is the compacting of info by decreasing the number of bits which are stored or transmitted. As a result, the compressed info will need much less disk space than the initial one, so extra content can be stored on identical amount of space. You can find many different compression algorithms that work in different ways and with a lot of them just the redundant bits are erased, so once the data is uncompressed, there is no decrease in quality. Others remove excessive bits, but uncompressing the data later will result in lower quality compared to the original. Compressing and uncompressing content takes a large amount of system resources, especially CPU processing time, so each and every hosting platform which uses compression in real time needs to have sufficient power to support that feature. An example how data can be compressed is to substitute a binary code such as 111111 with 6x1 i.e. "remembering" how many sequential 1s or 0s there should be instead of keeping the actual code.
Data Compression in Cloud Hosting
The ZFS file system which runs on our cloud web hosting platform uses a compression algorithm called LZ4. The latter is a lot faster and better than any other algorithm you can find, especially for compressing and uncompressing non-binary data i.e. internet content. LZ4 even uncompresses data quicker than it is read from a hard disk drive, which improves the overall performance of websites hosted on ZFS-based platforms. Since the algorithm compresses data very well and it does that very quickly, we are able to generate several backup copies of all the content stored in the cloud hosting accounts on our servers daily. Both your content and its backups will need less space and since both ZFS and LZ4 work extremely fast, the backup generation will not change the performance of the servers where your content will be stored.
Data Compression in Semi-dedicated Servers
The semi-dedicated server plans which we supply are created on a powerful cloud platform that runs on the ZFS file system. ZFS employs a compression algorithm named LZ4 that outperforms any other algorithm on the market in terms of speed and compression ratio when it comes to processing website content. This is valid particularly when data is uncompressed since LZ4 does that more quickly than it would be to read uncompressed data from a hard disk and for that reason, websites running on a platform where LZ4 is present will function quicker. We can benefit from this feature although it requires quite a large amount of CPU processing time as our platform uses many powerful servers working together and we do not create accounts on a single machine like a lot of companies do. There's an additional advantage of using LZ4 - considering the fact that it compresses data very well and does that speedily, we can also generate multiple daily backup copies of all accounts without influencing the performance of the servers and keep them for a whole month. By doing this, you can always bring back any content that you delete by mistake.