Data compression is the compacting of data by reducing the number of bits which are stored or transmitted. Consequently, the compressed data will take considerably less disk space than the original one, so additional content might be stored on identical amount of space. There are various compression algorithms that function in different ways and with some of them just the redundant bits are erased, which means that once the data is uncompressed, there is no decrease in quality. Others erase unnecessary bits, but uncompressing the data following that will result in lower quality compared to the original. Compressing and uncompressing content takes a significant amount of system resources, and in particular CPU processing time, so every hosting platform which employs compression in real time must have enough power to support this feature. An example how info can be compressed is to replace a binary code such as 111111 with 6x1 i.e. "remembering" how many sequential 1s or 0s there should be instead of saving the whole code.
Data Compression in Shared Hosting
The ZFS file system which is run on our cloud hosting platform uses a compression algorithm identified as LZ4. The latter is substantially faster and better than every other algorithm on the market, 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 sites hosted on ZFS-based platforms. As the algorithm compresses data really well and it does that very quickly, we're able to generate several backups of all the content kept in the shared hosting accounts on our servers on a daily basis. Both your content and its backups will require less space and since both ZFS and LZ4 work extremely fast, the backup generation will not influence the performance of the servers where your content will be stored.
Data Compression in Semi-dedicated Servers
If you host your sites in a semi-dedicated server account with our company, you'll be able to experience the advantages of LZ4 - the powerful compression algorithm used by the ZFS file system that is behind our advanced cloud hosting platform. What distinguishes LZ4 from all other algorithms out there is that it has a better compression ratio and it is much faster, in particular with regard to uncompressing web content. It does that even quicker than uncompressed data can be read from a hard drive, so your websites will perform better. The higher speed is at the expense of using lots of CPU processing time, which is not an issue for our platform because it consists of a large number of clusters working together. Together with the better performance, you will also have multiple daily backups at your disposal, so you could restore any deleted content with a few clicks. The backup copies are available for a whole month and we can afford to store them since they take significantly less space than ordinary backups.