lbzip2 -> parallel bzip2 compression utility

The latest released version of lbzip2 is 2.5. You can see its release notes or download it.

If you don’t know what is lbzip2 then keep reading this introduction. If you are looking for examples how to use it then you should read quick start.

If you need help, found a bug or want to request a feature then you can contact lbzip2 maintainer. Any feedback is welcome too.


lbzip2 is a free, multi-threaded compression utility with support for bzip2 compressed file format.

lbzip2 can process standard bz2 files in parallel. It uses POSIX threading model (pthreads), which allows it to take full advantage of symmetric multiprocessing (SMP) systems. It has been proven to scale linearly, even to over one hundred processor cores.

lbzip2 is fully compatible with bzip2 – both at file format and command line level. Files created by lbzip2 can be decompressed by all versions of bzip2 and other software supporting bz2 format. lbzip2 can decompress any bz2 files in parallel. All bzip2 command-line options are also accepted by lbzip2. This makes lbzip2 a drop-in replacement for bzip2.

lbzip2 is portable. It was successfully compiled and ran on wide variety of operating systems and on multiple hardware architectures. It is included in most popular GNU/Linux distributions.

Quality is essential. It was achieved by careful design and thorough testing. lbzip2 test suite consists of more than 300,000 test cases, which are ran on several system architectures before every release. The code is checked using different static analysis tools.


The latest version of lbzip2 is 2.5. For older versions, see below.

lbzip2 is released in form of source code only – lbzip2 authors themselves don’t provide pre-built binaries. You can either download source tarball of released versions of lbzip2 (recommended), or check out development branch.

Before trying to compile lbzip2 from source you should consider checking repositories of your operating system distribution. A number of systems ships packaged lbzip2 binaries. For many others lbzip2 is available from external repositories. See below.

Source code

You can download source tarball of the latest released version here: lbzip2-2.5.tar.gz, or in bz2 format: lbzip2-2.5.tar.bz2. Downloadable tarballs of older releases are listed at the botton of this page.

For instructions how to build lbzip2 from source code unpack sources and read the INSTALL file included there. lbzip2 uses GNU build system, so compilation and installation usually boils down to the following sequence:

Development snapshots

lbzip2 uses Git for source configuration management. Full source code of all versions of lbzip2 is available in the Git repository on GitHub.

The repository is accessible through Git native protocol at git:// or more securely, through HTTPS at There is also a Subversion mirror available at

Git repositories don’t contain any bundled third-party code, pre-built binaries or autogenerated files. To build lbzip2 from Git you need to generate bootstrap it first. During this process a few source files are generated, others are copied from Gnulib. You need a few additional software dependencies. See BOOTSTRAP file for more information.

Pre-built binaries

lbzip2 is part of a number of operating systems. The following list includes distributions for which lbzip2 is known to be packaged. It can be either included in official repositories or available from third parties.

Please note that neither these distributions nor lbzip2 packages provided by them are supported or endorsed by lbzip2 authors; this list is provided merely for users’ convenience.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *