Why use rar for compression when there are seemingly better alternatives?

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redsteakraw
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Why use rar for compression when there are seemingly better alternatives?

Unread post by redsteakraw »

I noticed the project recently switched to using RAR archives which is interesting as most Linux projects are switching to or using XZ archives. RAR files seem to require a freeware package that is not usually bundled in most linux distros. XZ archiving provides better compression and better integration with other linux distros out of the box and can be opened on Windows with 7Zip so multiplatform interoperability isn't a problem. Am I overlooking some factor that would make RAR a better choice?

Here is a benchmark of various compression algorithms.
http://catchchallenger.first-world.info ... LZ4_vs_LZO
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LeftEmpty
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Re: Why use rar for compression when there are seemingly better alternatives?

Unread post by LeftEmpty »

I have frankly no idea what you are talking about.
12characters
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Re: Why use rar for compression when there are seemingly better alternatives?

Unread post by 12characters »

What more precisely is packaged with RAR? I am only aware of the SD installer which is anyhow designed for Windows. 7-Zip can unpack RAR so you do not need the freeware program to extract and install the files from Linux.

MiSTer is open source and uses in part a bare bones Linux distro, but one should probably not look at it as a Linux project. The main developer works in Windows and the project primarily caters Windows users. For them, RAR is likely more familiar and easier to deal with than XZ.
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Coffea
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Re: Why use rar for compression when there are seemingly better alternatives?

Unread post by Coffea »

12characters wrote: Tue Jul 28, 2020 8:13 am RAR is likely more familiar and easier to deal with than XZ.
RAR is a fairly obscure format in 2020 ... It was popular back when every byte mattered and archives needed to be split because modems.

If it's just the SD loader, for Windows users, why not just use ZIP which has native OS/explorer support, high familiarity & doesn't require the end user to install something.

Package size & getting the absolute best compression rate is pretty much immaterial, a few extra MB doesn't impact hosting the files (GH pay for the bandwidth). XZ files would add unnecessary complication.
Johnny Love
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Re: Why use rar for compression when there are seemingly better alternatives?

Unread post by Johnny Love »

I think the question was about roms, not anything MiSTer related, so it's probably off-topic for this forum.
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Coffea
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Re: Why use rar for compression when there are seemingly better alternatives?

Unread post by Coffea »

Johnny Love wrote: Sat Aug 22, 2020 4:28 pm I think the question was about roms, not anything MiSTer related, so it's probably off-topic for this forum.
https://github.com/MiSTer-devel/SD-Inst ... n64_MiSTer
Johnny Love
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Re: Why use rar for compression when there are seemingly better alternatives?

Unread post by Johnny Love »

OK that makes sense, I would probably go for zip there, but Mr. Fusion seems like the better option these days.
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Sorgelig
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Re: Why use rar for compression when there are seemingly better alternatives?

Unread post by Sorgelig »

github has file size limits. rar is used because it gives greater compression ratio so i still can use github to release intall. XZ is not an option for windows.
s26
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Re: Why use rar for compression when there are seemingly better alternatives?

Unread post by s26 »

7z have a similar compression ratio than xz
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redsteakraw
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Re: Why use rar for compression when there are seemingly better alternatives?

Unread post by redsteakraw »

Sorgelig wrote: Sat Aug 29, 2020 3:52 am XZ is not an option for windows.
7-Zip(windows) can archive .XZ and is on windows, not to mention both WinZip and WinRAR can extract .XZ files. I may be missing something but I don't see how windows users can't use .XZ
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Sorgelig
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Re: Why use rar for compression when there are seemingly better alternatives?

Unread post by Sorgelig »

I don't see how linux users can't use free version of unrar.
Let's finish this pointless discussion.
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