Zoo

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File Format
Name Zoo
Ontology
Extension(s) .zoo
MIME Type(s) application/x-zoo
PRONOM x-fmt/269
Wikidata ID Q219983
Released 1986

Zoo is a compressed archive format developed by Rahul Dhesi. It was one of the many competing archive formats in the 1980s, and was based (originally) on LZW compression. It had some popularity with Open/VMS and Amiga systems, but didn't ultimately win out over ZIP.

Contents

Discussion

The Zoo software encompassed several different utilities, which were sometimes distributed individually, and which had their own version numbers.

  • Zoo - The main program
  • Ooz - Extractor
  • Booz (Barebones Ooz) - Extractor; some versions can also list files
  • Looz (Ooz with List) - Extract/list/execute
  • Atoz - Helper utility for converting other formats (ARC, LBR) to Zoo
  • Fiz - Analyze damaged Zoo files
  • Stuff - File finder
  • Sez - Self-Extracting Zoo utility

Compression methods

ID Name Description
0 No packing Uncompressed
1 LZD LZW. A fairly generic LZW implementation, with a dynamic code size from 9 to 13 bits, and two special codes: 256=Clear, 257=Stop.
2 LZH LZ77+Huffman. Nearly identical to LHA's "lh5" method. A small difference is that Zoo defines a way to mark the end of data. The format is pretty well documented in the comments in unzoo.c by Martin Schoenert (see below).

Identification

Files have bytes DC A7 C4 FD at offset 20.

Related formats

Specifications

[Ed. note: The Zoo format information in these documents is not of the highest quality. We haven't found a specification that is reasonably complete and correct.]

Software

Source code for at least Zoo versions 2.01 and 2.1 (a.k.a. 2.10) was made public. There does not seem to be a centralized project to maintain it. Some Linux distributions and other organizations maintain their own patched versions.

Other source code and packages:

Sample files

Links

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