Gzip for z/OS

It wasn’t that long ago that webmasters could expect their site visitors to wait five, even ten seconds for a page to render without losing their patience. That’s no longer the case. Attention spans are shorter, and web users expect their pages to load on demand. Google recommends that pages load in 2-3 seconds or faster. If your site takes longer than that to load, you can expect to lose visitors with each additional second your page asks of them. Speed is king, as they say.

Data compression is essential for speedy web page loading. With gzip compression, the download size of web content significantly decreases. Reduced file sizes translate to faster downloads, reduced storage needs, and big savings. These savings are far from trivial; the history of computing is also a history of the constant struggle to find enough space for the never-ending explosion of data that accompanies every technical advance. Now, thanks to Rocket Software, the numerous advantages of gzip compression are also available to the mainframe environment, with Rocket’s ported gzip for IBM® z/OS®.

The "g" in gzip exists in honor of GNU. In keeping with the GNU philosophy, gzip contains no proprietary algorithms. Consequently, almost every browser supports gzip, and internet giants such as Google and Yahoo make use of it as well.

Browsers work with gzip to make webpages load faster

gzip is one of the most popular compression tools out there. It can be used with any kind of data, but it's especially useful for compressing text. It’s also commonly found in streaming media, and for good reason: its compression rates can be as high as 70 to 90%.

Browsers communicate with websites to ensure that gzip functions correctly. Before a gzip file is transmitted, the browser notifies the server that it accepts compressed content. The server returns a response signaling that its content is indeed compressed. If the server doesn't send this response the browser assumes it's receiving an uncompressed file.     

IBM z/OS Systems Data Compression® (zEDC) improves disk utilization and accelerates compression. It's an efficient cross-platform solution that can compress a large file on one system and transfer it to another system for decompression. gzip can exploit zEDC capabilities for a dramatic reduction in processing time.

Gzip for z/OS is one of many free open source tools Rocket Software offers for z/OS

Our ported gzip for z/OS is just one example of Rocket Software's wholehearted commitment to democratizing mainframe development. It's one of more than 30 open source languages and tools Rocket has released for IBM z Systems mainframes, each of which is absolutely free. Rocket has modified these 30+ languages and tools to operate on IBM z13® and z13s® systems in order to extend the main programming environment and make it friendly for programmers who lack conventional mainframe language skills. All 30+ tools are supported on z/OS 1.12 and up. Fittingly, these ported tools have been compressed using gzip, so you may want to make this your first download!