XZ Utils (xz-utils or simply xz) is an open source and completely free software project that provides all the essential utilities to work with XZ tarballs on any GNU/Linux operating system. It allows you to extract archives that end in the .xz or .lzma file extensions, as well as to compress file and folders with the XZ compression method, resulting in .xz, .lzma, tar.xz or tar.lzma archives.
One of the most powerful compression algorithm
XZ is without no doubt one of the worlds most powerful compression algorithm, and it runs on GNU/Linux systems. It is capable of creating archives that are two or three times smaller than other popular compression methods, such as RAR, ZIP, GZ or BZ2. To be more precise, the XZ archives are with 15% smaller than bzip2 tarballs and with 30% smaller than gzip files.
What’s in the box?
XZ Utils or xz-utils or xz is the official name of the package, which can be easily installed on many GNU/Linux operating systems from their default software repositories. It comprises of the liblzma compression library, the xz command-line tool, and the xzdec decompression-only tool.
In addition, it comes with a set of shell scripts, including xzgrep, xzegrep, xzfgrep, xzless, xzmore, xzcat, xzcmp and xzdiff, that allow you to view, compare and grep XZ archives, as well as the necessary components to handle LZMA archives, which are now deprecated by XZ. The XZ command includes several important options, including the ability to force decompression and compression.
The XZ data compression software is officially supported on the GNU/Linux, GNU/HURD, BSD (FreeBSD, OpenBSD, NetBSD, Dragonfly BSD and MirBSD), MINIX, Solaris, IRIX, AIX, QNX, Mac OS X, Haiku, HP-UX, Tru64, OpenVMS, OpenVOS, IBM OS/2, DOS (FreeDOS and MS-DOS), as well as Microsoft Windows 95 and later.