GZIP (.gz)


    • MIME type: application/x-gzip
    • GZIP compression method and file format.
    • General-purpose lossless compression method.
    • Commonly used for archiving data and for exchanging files on the internet.
    • Often used in combination with TAR.
    • Popular on Unix systems.
    • The GZIP file format is described in the internet standard recommendation RFC 1952.
    • Binary format.
    • Stores a single file.

Import & Export

  • Import["file.gz"] uncompresses file.gz and imports file, automatically inferring the format from the file contents.
  • Import["file.ext.gz"] uncompresses and imports a GZIP-compressed file.
  • Import["file.ext.gz",elem] imports the specified element from file.ext file.
  • Import["file.gz","format"] uncompresses a GZIP file and imports it as "format".
  • Import["file.ext.gz",{elem,suba,subb,}] imports a subelement.
  • Import["file.ext.gz",{{elem1,elem2,}}] imports multiple elements.
  • The import format can be explicitly specified with Import["file.gz",{"format",elems1,elems2,}].
  • Import["file","GZIP"] or Import["file",{"GZIP",elem,}] imports any GZIP file.
  • Export["file.ext.gz",expr] exports any expression expr to a GZIP-compressed file whose format is implied by the file name extension .ext.
  • Export["file.ext.gz",expr,elem] creates a GZIP-compressed .ext file by treating expr as specifying element elem.
  • Export["file.ext.gz",expr,opt1->val1,] exports expr with the specified option elements taken to have the specified values.
  • Export["file.ext.gz",{expr1,expr2,},{{elem1,elem2,}}] treats each expri as specifying the corresponding elemi.
  • The export format and GZIP compression method can be explicitly specified with Export["file",exprs,{"GZIP","format",elems}].
  • See the reference pages for full general information on Import and Export.
  • ImportString and ExportString can handle GZIP-compressed data.

Import Elements

  • The GZIP format itself does not support Import or Export elements.
  • Import elements of the GZIP-compressed file:
  • "Elements" elements and options available in this file
    "Rules"full rules for each element and option
    "Options"rules for options, properties, and settings
  • Import["file.ext.gz","Elements"] returns the names of elements available in file.ext, effectively unpacking the compressed file before importing "file.ext".


  • General Export option:
  • "CompressionLevel"AutomaticGZIP compression strength, given as a number in the range 0 to 1
  • The setting "CompressionLevel"->1 corresponds to the strongest available compression, resulting in the smallest possible file size.


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Basic Examples  (2)

Export a string to a GZIP-compressed text file:

Click for copyable input

Convert the previous output back to a Wolfram Language string:

Click for copyable input

This exports graphics to a GZIP-compressed JPEG file:

Click for copyable input

This gives the available Import elements of the JPEG file:

Click for copyable input

When importing any element from a .gz file, the Wolfram Language automatically uncompresses it:

Click for copyable input

Export Options  (1)

Introduced in 2005
Updated in 2008