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Thinking in Java
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Compression

The Java I/O library contains classes to support reading and writing streams in a compressed format. These are wrapped around existing I/O classes to provide compression functionality.

These classes are not derived from the Reader and Writer classes, but instead are part of the InputStream and OutputStream hierarchies. This is because the compression library works with bytes, not characters. However, you might sometimes be forced to mix the two types of streams. (Remember that you can use InputStreamReader and OutputStreamWriter to provide easy conversion between one type and another.)

Compression class

Function

CheckedInputStream

GetCheckSum( ) produces checksum for any InputStream (not just decompression).

CheckedOutputStream

GetCheckSum( ) produces checksum for any OutputStream (not just compression).

DeflaterOutputStream

Base class for compression classes.

ZipOutputStream

A DeflaterOutputStream that compresses data into the Zip file format.

GZIPOutputStream

A DeflaterOutputStream that compresses data into the GZIP file format.

InflaterInputStream

Base class for decompression classes.

ZipInputStream

An InflaterInputStream that decompresses data that has been stored in the Zip file format.

GZIPInputStream

An InflaterInputStream that decompresses data that has been stored in the GZIP file format.

Although there are many compression algorithms, Zip and GZIP are possibly the most commonly used. Thus you can easily manipulate your compressed data with the many tools available for reading and writing these formats.

Thinking in Java
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   Reproduced courtesy of Bruce Eckel, MindView, Inc. Design by Interspire