Data compression is the compacting of info by reducing the number of bits which are stored or transmitted. In this way, the compressed info requires less disk space than the initial one, so extra content might be stored on identical amount of space. There're many different compression algorithms which function in different ways and with many of them only the redundant bits are removed, so once the information is uncompressed, there's no loss of quality. Others delete unnecessary bits, but uncompressing the data following that will lead to lower quality compared to the original. Compressing and uncompressing content consumes a huge amount of system resources, in particular CPU processing time, therefore every hosting platform which employs compression in real time should have sufficient power to support this attribute. An example how information can be compressed is to replace a binary code such as 111111 with 6x1 i.e. "remembering" how many consecutive 1s or 0s there should be instead of keeping the entire code.
Data Compression in Website Hosting
The ZFS file system that runs on our cloud web hosting platform employs a compression algorithm identified as LZ4. The aforementioned is a lot faster and better than every other algorithm you can find, particularly for compressing and uncompressing non-binary data i.e. web content. LZ4 even uncompresses data faster than it is read from a hard drive, which improves the performance of Internet sites hosted on ZFS-based platforms. Due to the fact that the algorithm compresses data really well and it does that very quickly, we're able to generate several backup copies of all the content stored in the website hosting accounts on our servers daily. Both your content and its backups will need reduced space and since both ZFS and LZ4 work very fast, the backup generation will not influence the performance of the web servers where your content will be stored.