Feature? Support for 7zip in Pack files dialogue (Alt+F5) / native 7z support / streamline packing?

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mariush
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Feature? Support for 7zip in Pack files dialogue (Alt+F5) / native 7z support / streamline packing?

Post by *mariush » 2018-09-25, 21:21 UTC

Is there really a lot of demand still for packing files to ARJ or LHA (or I would dare to say even ACE) ?
Wouldn't it make sense to "streamline" it a bit and leave just the more popular and maybe add 7zip to the compression options.

How about removing some of the lesser used formats from the alt+f5 dialogue by default and maybe have options in the Options > Packer configuration panel to add these formats to the dialogue if some users want them back? Like, for each format have checkbox [ ] Show this compression in dialogues.

ZIP is by now basically patent free, rar has free unrar and it's popular, TAR and GZ and TGZ are free so I guess they're worth being there, but ACE is shareware only as far as I know, and it's not that popular and doesn't have compression ratios much higher than rar (and they're lower than 7zip)
I know ARJ was used for BBS'es and maybe some older systems (Amiga?) but is it really so important to be an option among zip/rar/tar etc?
And I personally never heard of UC2 ...

You could add the 7zip library with Total Commander and have built in support without relying on standalone installation of 7zip

I'd also like to have an option like "create multiple archives, keep each file below this many bytes"
For example, let's say I want to make a TAR out of 10k files but want each TAR below 700 MB or 2 GB (so I can write files easily on DVDs, where some file systems may not allow files larger than 1 GB or 2 GB). TAR is a no-compression format, so I'd love it if total commander would be able to realize "hey, if I add this file to the tar archive I'm currently creating, the final file size of this TAR file will be over the limit user specified, so let's close tar file now and create separate tar file for this file and whatever else needs added."
Other archive formats like zip or rar support splitting single files into multiple archives so it's not such a big deal but tar afaik doesn't support that.

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Re: Feature? Support for 7zip in Pack files dialogue (Alt+F5) / native 7z support / streamline packing?

Post by *MVV » 2018-09-26, 05:52 UTC

I agree that a lot of formats in Pack dialog are useless for most people, and there were some suggestions for improving that dialog.

It would be quite nice to be able to customize it, to remove unused items for outdated external packers, and convert drop-down list to a regular listbox showing more than one item for easier selection.

Also it would be nice to see multiple items for same formats, e.g. fast and maximum ZIP, fastest, normal and ultimate 7z... Unfortunately WCX interface doesn't support profiles, but it would be quite useful to have them, e.g. it can be solved by an additional function like SetPackProfile(char* ProfileDetails) that TC would call prior to calling PackFiles, also there should be a way to get last used profile from plugin so one could make pack presets.

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Re: Feature? Support for 7zip in Pack files dialogue (Alt+F5) / native 7z support / streamline packing?

Post by *ghisler(Author) » 2018-09-26, 08:26 UTC

I'm sure that if I just remove some options, there will be people who complain. But it would be a good idea to make it configurable somehow, e.g. to use the radio buttons for plugins instead.
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Re: Feature? Support for 7zip in Pack files dialogue (Alt+F5) / native 7z support / streamline packing?

Post by *mariush » 2018-09-26, 16:39 UTC

You don't have to remove them, just improve the dialogue visually and offer the option in the configuration panel to bring those compression methods back to the dialogue.
For example have on the right :

( ) ZIP ( ) RAR
( ) 7z ( ) TAR
( ) [ drop down list ] < --- when user clicks, show drop down menu with built in compressors like arj, lha, packer plugins

Users that would complain about missing those formats would still have them but they'd be temporarily inconvenienced by having to do two clicks instead of one, at least until they go in configuration and alter the default order (if you decide to add this feature)

In the configuration panel, you could have a list box with the built in packers and on the right of the list, you could have two buttons (up and down)
let user select a packer and then using up or down buttons (or maybe dragging an entry up and down), user can choose the order in which the packers are shown.
have the first 4 packers in that list shown in the dialogue (where you see ZIP , RAR, 7z , TAR )
The list could also have check boxes to the left of each entry and you can put a note at the bottom of list box saying check each entry you want to be visible in the drop down selection (in the pack dialogue)
User could double click on hit a Configure button or options for a specific packer could be shown below the list box, when a list item is selected by user.

The first or last entry in the drop down list (when user clicks on it) could be something like [ Configure packers ]

Could also have 3 or 4 default compression speed options in a drop down list or something, like 0 : no compression , 1 : fast ( weaker compression but low memory usage and high speed) 2 : normal (decent compression ratio, average memory usage, harder on the cpu) 3: best (very good compression ratio, high memory usage, high cpu usage

Would have to be tweaked for specific compressors. For example 7zip can use a lot o memory depending on the number of cpu cores and profile selected... and now we have Ryzens with 6-8 cores and hyperthreading so could have up to 16-32 cores.

As an idea, 7zip fastest profile uses 3 MB of memory per core, fast uses 10 , normal jumps to 186 MB per core (up to 1.5 GB of memory usage with 8 cores, if the volume of data is big enough) and maximum goes to 370 Mb per core. There's also ultra with 700 MB per core but that's like "placebo" profiles for video encoders, brings super low compression ratio increases for massive hits on cpu and compression speeds

So I'd set the your "best" preset in the packer dialogue could default to "maximum" on 7zip, but in the case of zip or rar, it could default to the highest possible preset since those may not have such super high presets (that use loads of memory)

I also wanted to say that with "maximum" compression option on 7zip you could get into trouble with a 32bit version of total commander, but the absolute majority of people needing 32 bit version of total commander would most likely have only dual or quad core processors at best,so you wouldn't get into memory limitations (as 32bit apps are limited to <2 GB by default)

ps. further tweaking suggestions to the pack files dialogue

Maybe have [ ] Recursively pack subdirectories first option, since that one is most likely to be always checked (it's a default, implicit)

The "also" is a bit confusing in "also pack path names, if it's the first option .... since it implies a decision about something was already made, so you say also ... but it's the first option... a bit confusing.
Maybe drop the "also" and just say "[ ] Pack path names (when subdirectories are included in archive)" or something like that (or just gray out the whole line when recursively pack subdirectories is unchecked (which would now be above this one, like a parent option)

maybe change "move to archive" to "Delete original files after archive is created"

Move the "multiple archive" option lower, and maybe add a drop down list with some sane presets like 10 MB (forum post attachments limits, email messages limits etc) , 100 MB , 1 GB and custom (let user type value and recognize M or G as MiBytes , GiBytes)
The option is confusing as is, some users may be "scared" of it ... yes, i want to make multi volume archive, but where do i select how big each file should be,there's nothing in the configuration.
only after you select Ok, you get asked in a weird dialogue which say how many bytes per file ... you want users to keep track of how many zeroes they enter when they want 1 GB files ? Yes, you get those predefined values if you select from drop down list, but on first look you're hit with the "bytes" and the number box.
and the title of this small window says "split" ...do you mean the split feature in file menu where you'd have to combine the chunks later back to a single file,or is it actually proper archive volumes? i guess you're reusing the dialogue there, but it can be confusing to some users.

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Re: Feature? Support for 7zip in Pack files dialogue (Alt+F5) / native 7z support / streamline packing?

Post by *milo1012 » 2018-09-26, 18:00 UTC

Since this is more about replacing the age old packer selection radio buttons than implementing 7-Zip:
There is already a discussion about how to improve this selection dialog:

https://www.ghisler.ch/board/viewtopic.php?t=44475
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Re: Feature? Support for 7zip in Pack files dialogue (Alt+F5) / native 7z support / streamline packing?

Post by *mariush » 2018-09-26, 19:05 UTC

I apologize if this is the wrong thing to say, but that thread was started and ended in 2016.

In most forums i frequently use, I discussion or thread is basically over and done with when there's no new replies for a week or two. Some people would be downright annoyed had i "revived" such threads.

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Re: Feature? Support for 7zip in Pack files dialogue (Alt+F5) / native 7z support / streamline packing?

Post by *milo1012 » 2018-09-26, 19:19 UTC

2mariush
This wasn't meant to imply that you should revive that old thread, but just that there already are suggestions for how to improve this dialog, in case you haven't noticed.
If you have other suggestions, please go ahead and post them here. I'd be happy to have this dialog improved, as I'm developing wcx plug-ins on my own and it bothers me to have just this little drop down box for selecting packer plug-ins.
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Re: Feature? Support for 7zip in Pack files dialogue (Alt+F5) / native 7z support / streamline packing?

Post by *Hacker » 2018-09-26, 20:29 UTC

mariush,
In most forums i frequently use, I discussion or thread is basically over and done with when there's no new replies for a week or two. Some people would be downright annoyed had i "revived" such threads.
Just as an FYI, while not explicitly stated anywhere, in this forum we don't mind "reviving" old threads. Personally I don't see a reason why opening a new thread each time would be preferable to keeping things neat and tidy and in one place. I'd even say it suggests the user has not made the effort to search for existing threads relating to his problem but simply chose to open a new one (not implying that's your case).

Just my two cents as a moderator.

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Re: Feature? Support for 7zip in Pack files dialogue (Alt+F5) / native 7z support / streamline packing?

Post by *j7n » 2018-09-28, 02:49 UTC

I would like to see 7-Zip natively supported without needing a plugin. 7z is allround good format, free and fairly popular. Working with archives is one of the primary tasks of a file manager (unlike image or sound files), and TC is falling behind in capabilities. For most queries on the forum, it seems that the answer is a plugin.

Since 7z performance is highly scalable (compared to zip), the program should offer separate controls controls for compression strength preset, dictionary size and solid mode in the pack dialog without going to global options. I may want to use no or lightest compression to group files for sending over network just once, or avoid solid compression for random access. Dictionary size is important: too large and the compressor runs out of memory, or archive can't be unpacked on weak old systems, too small and solid mode is ineffective. Perhaps the compression page in global settings can have a parameter for how many cores to use at most, to allow choosing a larger dictionary.
There's also ultra with 700 MB per core but that's like "placebo" profiles for video encoders, brings super low compression ratio increases for massive hits on cpu and compression speeds
A 64 MB dictionary for Ultra is not that large. Binaries approaching this size are not unheard of today. And this dictionary is needed to deduplicate a set for multiple systems or languages in solid mode. I may want to scale back the preset, but use max dictionary at times.
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