Skip to main content

Compression library for data frames and tabular data files, csv, excel etc.

Project description


Compression library for data frames and tabular data files, csv, excel etc.

Build Status

Compression library to compress big lists and/or pandas dataframes using an optimized algorithm (lzhw) developed from Lempel-Ziv, Huffman and LZ-Welch techniques.

Full documentation can be found here

How lzhw Works

The library's main goal is to compress data frames, excel and csv files so that they consume less space to overcome memory errors. Also to enable dealing with large files that can cause memory errors when reading them in python or that cause slow operations. With lzhw, we can read compressed files and do operations column by column only on columns that we are interesred in.

The algorithm is a mix of the famous lempel-ziv and huffman coding algorithm with some use of lempel-ziv-welch algorithm. The algorithm starts with an input stream for example this one:

example = ["to", "be", "or", "not", "to", "be", "or", "to", "be", "or", "not"] * 2
# tobeornottobeortobeornottobeornottobeortobeornot

lzhw uses lempel-zivz77 to discover repeated sequences in the stream and construct triplets, in that format <offset,length,literal> where offset is how many steps should we return back word to find the beginning of the current sequence and length is how many steps should we move and literal is the next value after the sequence.

Then we will have 3 shorter lists representing the stream, where Huffman Coding can come to the game encoding them.

The function that performs lempel-ziv and returning the triplets called lz77_compress.

import lzhw
lz77_ex = lzhw.lz77_compress(example)
# [(None, None, 'to'), (None, None, 'be'), (None, None, 'or'), 
# (None, None, 'not'), (4, 3, 'to'), (7, 6, 'not'), (11, 6, 'not')]

Here all the Nones values are originally "0s" but converted to None to save more space.

Now huffman coding will take the offsets list, lengths list and literal list and encode them based on most occurring values to give:

lz77_lists = list(zip(*lz77_ex))
# [(None, None, None, None, 4, 7, 11), 
#  (None, None, None, None, 3, 6, 6), 
#  ('to', 'be', 'or', 'not', 'to', 'not', 'not')]

huffs = []
from collections import Counter
for i in range(len(lz77_lists)):
    huff = lzhw.huffman_coding(Counter(lz77_lists[i]))
# [{None: '1', 4: '010', 7: '011', 11: '00'}, {None: '1', 3: '00', 6: '01'}, 
#  {'to': '11', 'be': '100', 'or': '101', 'not': '0'}]

Now if we encode each value in the triplets with its corresponding value from the huffman dictionary and append everything together we will have:

bits = []
for i in range(len(huffs)):
    bit = "".join([huffs[i].get(k) for k in lz77_lists[i]])
# ['111101001100', '1111000101', '1110010101100']

# 35

Which has a length of 35 bits only!

Using each algorithm alone can give us bigger number of bits, for example, using only huffman coding will give us:

huff_alone = lzhw.huffman_coding(Counter(example))
# {'to': '11', 'be': '01', 'or': '10', 'not': '00'}

huff_bit = "".join([huff_alone.get(k) for k in example])
# 11011000110110110110001101100011011011011000

# 44

44 bits, 9 more bit!!! Big deal when dealing with bigger data.

The techniques may seem similar to the DEFLATE algorithm which uses both lempel-ziv77 and huffman coding, but I am not sure how the huffman coding further compresses the triplets. And also it doesn't use the lempel-ziv-welch for further compression.

All of the steps can be done at once using LZHW class as follows and as shown in the Quick Start section:

lzhw_comp = lzhw.LZHW(example)
# (8012, 1989, 15532) # this is how the compressed data looks like and stored

# {'offset': {3: None, 10: 4, 11: 7, 4: 11}, 
#  'length': {3: None, 4: 3, 5: 6}, 
#  'literal': {7: 'to', 12: 'be', 13: 'or', 2: 'not'}}

Quick Start

pip install lzhw
import lzhw

sample_data = ["Sunny", "Sunny", "Overcast", "Rain", "Rain", "Rain", "Overcast", 
               "Sunny", "Sunny", "Rain", "Sunny", "Overcast", "Overcast", "Rain", 
               "Rain", "Rain", "Sunny", "Sunny", "Overcaste"]

compressed = lzhw.LZHW(sample_data)
## let's see how the compressed object looks like:
# (506460, 128794, 112504)

## its size
# 72

## size of original
from sys import getsizeof
# 216

# space saving from original to compressed is 67%

## Let's decompress and check whether there is any information loss
decomp = compressed.decompress()
print(decomp == sample_data)
# True

As we saw, the LZHW class has saved 67% of the space used to store the original list without any loss. This percentage can get better with bigger data that may have repeated sequences. The class has also some useful helper methods as space_saving, size, and decompress() to revert back to original.

Another example with numeric data.

from random import sample, choices

numbers = choices(sample(range(0, 5), 5), k = 20)
comp_num = lzhw.LZHW(numbers)

print(getsizeof(numbers) > comp_num.size())
# True

print(numbers == list(map(int, comp_num.decompress()))) ## make it int again
# True

# space saving from original to compressed is 73%

Let's look at how the compressed object is stored and how it looks like when printed: LZHW class has an attribute called compressed which is a tuple of integers representing the encoded triplets.

print(comp_num.compressed) # how the compressed is saved (as tuple of 3 integers)
# (8198555, 620206, 3059308)

We can also write the compressed data to files using save_to_file method, and read it back and decompress it using decompress_from_file function.

status = ["Good", "Bad", "Bad", "Bad", "Good", "Good", "Average", "Average", "Good",
          "Average", "Average", "Bad", "Average", "Good", "Bad", "Bad", "Good"]
comp_status = lzhw.LZHW(status)
decomp_status = lzhw.decompress_from_file("status.txt")
print(status == decomp_status)
# True

Compressing DataFrames

lzhw doesn't work only on lists, it also compress pandas dataframes and save it into compressed files to decompress them later.

import pandas as pd

df = pd.DataFrame({"a": [1, 1, 2, 2, 1, 3, 4, 4],
                   "b": ["A", "A", "B", "B", "A", "C", "D", "D"]})
comp_df = lzhw.CompressedDF(df)
# 100%|██████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████| 2/2 [00:00<00:00, 2003.97it/s]

Let's check space saved by compression

comp_space = 0
for i in range(len(comp_df.compressed)):
	comp_space += comp_df.compressed[i].size()

print(comp_space, getsizeof(df))
# 144 712

## Test information loss
print(comp_df.compressed[0].decompress() == list(map(str, df.a)))
# True

Saving and Loading Compressed DataFrames

With lzhw we can save a data frame into a compressed file and then read it again using save_to_file method and decompress_df_from_file function.

## Save to file

## Load the file
original = lzhw.decompress_df_from_file("comp_df.txt")
# 100%|██████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████| 2/2 [00:00<00:00, 2004.93it/s]

#   a  b
#0  1  A
#1  1  A
#2  2  B
#3  2  B
#4  1  A
#5  3  C
#6  4  D
#7  4  D

Compressing Bigger DataFrames

Let's try to compress a real-world dataframe german_credit.xlsx file from UCI Machine Learning Repository [1].

Original txt file is 219 KB on desk.

gc_original = pd.read_excel("examples/german_credit.xlsx")
comp_gc = lzhw.CompressedDF(gc_original)
# 100%|█████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████| 62/62 [00:00<00:00, 257.95it/s]

## Compare sizes in Python:
comp_space = 0
for i in range(len(comp_gc.compressed)):
	comp_space += comp_gc.compressed[i].size()

print(comp_space, getsizeof(gc_original))
# 4504 548852

print(comp_gc.compressed[0].decompress() == list(map(str, gc_original.iloc[:, 0])))
# True

Huge space saving, 99%, with no information loss!

Let's now write the compressed dataframe into a file and compare the sizes of the files.


Checking the size of the compressed file, it is 44 KB. Meaning that in total we saved around 79%. Future versions will be optimized to save more space.

Let's now check when we reload the file, will we lose any information or not.

## Load the file
gc_original2 = lzhw.decompress_df_from_file("gc_compressed.txt")
# 100%|█████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████| 62/62 [00:00<00:00, 259.46it/s]

print(list(gc_original2.iloc[:, 13]) == list(map(str, gc_original.iloc[:, 13])))
# True

print(gc_original.shape == gc_original2.shape)
# True

Perfect! There is no information loss at all.

(De)Compressing specific columns from a dataframe

With lzhw you can choose what columns you are interested in compressing from a data frame. CompressedDF class has an argument selected_cols.

gc_original = pd.read_excel("examples/german_credit.xlsx")
comp_gc = lzhw.CompressedDF(gc_original, selected_cols = [0, 3, 4, 7])
# 100%|███████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████| 4/4 [00:00<00:00, 401.11it/s]

Also when you have a compressed file that you want to decompress, you don't have to decompress it all, you can choose only specific columns to decompress. By this you can deal with large compressed files and do operations column by column quickly and avoid memory errors decompress_df_from_file function has the same argument selected_cols.

gc_original2 = lzhw.decompress_df_from_file("gc_compressed.txt", selected_cols = [0, 4])
# 100%|████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████| 62/62 [00:00<00:00, 3348.53it/s]

#	Duration	Age
#0	       6	67
#1	      48	22
#2	      12	49
#3	      42	45
#4	      24	53

Let's compare this subset with the original df.

gc_original.iloc[:, [0, 4]].head()
#	Duration	Age
#0	       6	67
#1	      48	22
#2	      12	49
#3	      42	45
#4	      24	53


selected_cols has "all" as its default value.

Using the lzhw Command Line Interface

In lzhw_cli folder, there is a python script that can work on command line to compress and decompress files.

Here is the file:


usage: [-h] [-d] -f INPUT -o OUTPUT [-c COLUMNS [COLUMNS ...]]
                   [-nh] error: the following arguments are required: -f/--input, -o/--output

Getting help to see what it does and its arguments:

$python -h

usage: [-h] [-d] -f INPUT -o OUTPUT [-c COLUMNS [COLUMNS ...]]

Data Frame Compressor

optional arguments:
  -h, --help            show this help message and exit
  -d, --decompress      decompress input into output
  -f INPUT, --input INPUT
                        input file to be (de)compressed
  -o OUTPUT, --output OUTPUT
                        output where to save result
  -c COLUMNS [COLUMNS ...], --columns COLUMNS [COLUMNS ...]
                        select specific columns by names or indices (1-based)
  -nh, --no-header      skip header / data has no header

How to compress:

$python -f "file_to_compress" -o "output"

compressed successfully

How to decompress:

$python -d -f "file_to_decompress" -o "output"

decompressed successfully

Helper Functions

Aside from the functions and classes discussed, the library also has some more compression functions that can be used as standalone.


lz78 which performs the famous lempel-ziv78 algorithm which differs from lempel-ziv77 in that instead of triplets it creates a dictionary for the previously seen sequences:

import random
example = random.choices(["A", "B", "C"], k = 20)
#['A', 'A', 'C', 'C', 'A', 'A', 'C', 'C', 'C', 'B', 'B', 
# 'A', 'B', 'B', 'C', 'C', 'B', 'C', 'C', 'B']

lz78_comp, symb_dict = lzhw.lz78(example)
# ['1', '1', 'C', '3', '1', 'A', '3', 'C', '3', 'B', 
#  '7', '1', 'B', '7', 'C', '6', 'C', 'C B']

# {'A': '1', 'A C': '2', 'C': '3', 'A A': '4', 'C C': '5', 
#  'C B': '6', 'B': '7', 'A B': '8', 'B C': '9', 'C B C': '10'}


Huffman Coding function which takes a Counter object and encodes each symbol accordingly.

from collections import Counter
huffs = lzhw.huffman_coding(Counter(example))
# {'A': '10', 'C': '0', 'B': '11'}

lzw_compress() and lzw_decompress()

They perform lempel-ziv-welch compressing and decompressing

print(lzhw.lzw_compress("Hello World"))
# 723201696971929295664359987300

print(lzhw.lzw_decompress(lzhw.lzw_compress("Hello World")))
# Hello World


I wanted to modify the lempel-ziv78 and instead of creating a dictionary and returing the codes in the output compressed stream, I wanted to glue the repeated sequences together to get a shorter list with more repeated sequences to further use it with huffman coding.

I named this function lempel-ziv20 :D:

lz20_ex = lzhw.lz20(example)
# ['A', 'A', 'C', 'C', 'A', 'A', 'C', 'C', 'C', 'B', 'B', 
#  'A', 'B', 'B', 'C', 'C B', 'C', 'C B']

huff20 = lzhw.huffman_coding(Counter(lz20_ex))
# {'A': '10', 'C': '0', 'B': '111', 'C B': '110'}

In data with repeated sequences it will give better huffman dictionaries.

lz77_compress() and lz77_decompress()

The main two functions in the library which apply the lempel-ziv77 algorithm:

lz77_ex = lzhw.lz77_compress(example)
# [(None, None, 'A'), (1, 1, 'C'), (1, 1, 'A'), (4, 3, 'C'), 
#  (None, None, 'B'), (1, 1, 'A'), (3, 2, 'C'), (7, 2, 'C'), (1, 1, 'B')]

lz77_decomp = lzhw.lz77_decompress(lz77_ex)
print(lz77_decomp == example)
# True
[1] Dua, D. and Graff, C. (2019). UCI Machine Learning Repository []. Irvine, CA: University of California, School of Information and Computer Science.

Project details

Download files

Download the file for your platform. If you're not sure which to choose, learn more about installing packages.

Source Distribution

lzhw-1.1.7.tar.gz (270.7 kB view hashes)

Uploaded Source

Built Distribution

lzhw-1.1.7-cp37-cp37m-win_amd64.whl (154.6 kB view hashes)

Uploaded CPython 3.7m Windows x86-64

Supported by

AWS AWS Cloud computing and Security Sponsor Datadog Datadog Monitoring Fastly Fastly CDN Google Google Download Analytics Microsoft Microsoft PSF Sponsor Pingdom Pingdom Monitoring Sentry Sentry Error logging StatusPage StatusPage Status page