Using zip format for help pages, examples, etc.

Martyn Plummer
Fri, 26 Mar 1999 13:32:16 +0100

Nicholas Lee wrote:

> Why not just the approach that some linux distributions use,
> (debian at least) of gziping the man pages individually.

The problem isn't that the help files take up a lot of space,
but that certain file systems are extremely inefficient in
the use of that space.  FAT16 assigns disk space in allocation
units that are, roughly, proportional to the size of the
partition. I think a 1Gb partition has 16kb allocation units,
whereas most help files are only 1-2kb. If a file is already
smaller than an allocation unit, it won't take up any less space
when compressed. By putting lots of small files on one
archive, however, you get round the inefficiency of the filesystem.
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