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6.40. Bzip2-1.0.2

The Bzip2 package contains programs for compressing and decompressing files. Text files yield a much better compression than with the traditional gzip.

Approximate build time: 0.1 SBU

Required disk space: 3.0 MB

Bzip2 installation depends on: Bash, Binutils, Coreutils, Diffutils, GCC, Glibc, and Make

6.40.1. Installation of Bzip2

Prepare Bzip2 for compilation with:

make -f Makefile-libbz2_so
make clean

The -f flag will cause Bzip2 to be built using a different Makefile file, in this case the Makefile-libbz2_so file, which creates a dynamic libbz2.so library and links the Bzip2 utilities against it.

Compile the package:


If reinstalling Bzip2, perform rm -f /usr/bin/bz* first, otherwise the following make install will fail.

Install the programs:

make install

Install the shared bzip2 binary into the /bin directory, make some necessary symbolic links, and clean up:

cp bzip2-shared /bin/bzip2
cp -a libbz2.so* /lib
ln -s ../../lib/libbz2.so.1.0 /usr/lib/libbz2.so
rm /usr/bin/{bunzip2,bzcat,bzip2}
ln -s bzip2 /bin/bunzip2
ln -s bzip2 /bin/bzcat

6.40.2. Contents of Bzip2

Installed programs: bunzip2 (link to bzip2), bzcat (link to bzip2), bzcmp, bzdiff, bzegrep, bzfgrep, bzgrep, bzip2, bzip2recover, bzless, and bzmore

Installed libraries: libbz2.a, libbz2.so (link to libbz2.so.1.0), libbz2.so.1.0 (link to libbz2.so.1.0.2), and libbz2.so.1.0.2

Short Descriptions


Decompresses bzipped files


Decompresses to standard output


Runs cmp on bzipped files


Runs diff on bzipped files


Runs grep on bzipped files


Runs egrep on bzipped files


Runs fgrep on bzipped files


Compresses files using the Burrows-Wheeler block sorting text compression algorithm with Huffman coding; the compression rate is better than that achieved by more conventional compressors using “Lempel-Ziv” algorithms, like gzip


Tries to recover data from damaged bzipped files


Runs less on bzipped files


Runs more on bzipped files


The library implementing lossless, block-sorting data compression, using the Burrows-Wheeler algorithm