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zip file I/O library for Mac OS X and iOS

branch: master

zipzap is a zip file I/O library for Mac OS X and iOS.

The zip file is an ideal container for compound Objective-C documents. Zip files are widely used and well understood. You can randomly access their parts. The format compresses decently and has extensive operating system and tool support. So we want to make this format an even easier choice for you. Thus, the library features:

  • Easy-to-use interface: The public API offers just three classes! Yet you can look through zip files using familiar NSArray collections and properties. And you can zip, unzip and rezip zip files through familiar NSData, NSStream and Image I/O classes.
  • Efficient implementation: We've optimized zip file reading and writing to reduce virtual memory pressure and disk file thrashing. Depending on how your compound document is organized, updating a single entry can be faster than writing the same data to a separate file.
  • File format compatibility: Since zipzap closely follows the zip file format specification, it works with most Mac, Linux and Windows zip tools.


As an independent project:

  • In the Terminal, run git clone
  • Within the zipzap directory, open the zipzap.xcodeproj Xcode project.
  • In the Xcode project, select either the zipzap (OS X) or the zipzap (iOS) scheme from the drop down.
  • You can now build, test (Mac OS X only) or analyze with the selected scheme.
  • The built libraries and test cases are in a subdirectory of ~/Library/Developer/Xcode/DerivedData.

As a project integrated with your own workspace:

  • In the Terminal, run cd workspace then git submodule add
  • In your Xcode workspace, choose the File > Add Files to "workspace" menu item, then within the zipzap directory pick the zipzap.xcodeproj Xcode project.
  • In any project target that will use zipzap:
    • In Build Phases > Link Binary With Libraries, add the corresponding libzipzap.a and any other library listed in the Require Link section below.
    • Under Build Settings > Search Paths > Header Search Paths, add ../zipzap.
  • You can now build, test or analyze those project targets.


Header includes:

#import <zipzap/zipzap.h>

Reading an existing zip file:

ZZArchive* oldArchive = [ZZArchive archiveWithContentsOfURL:[NSURL fileURLWithPath:@"/tmp/"]];
ZZArchiveEntry* firstArchiveEntry = oldArchive.entries[0];
NSLog(@"The first entry's uncompressed size is %lu bytes.", firstArchiveEntry.uncompressedSize);
NSLog(@"The first entry's data is: %@.", [firstArchiveEntry newData]);

Writing a new zip file:

ZZMutableArchive* newArchive = [ZZMutableArchive archiveWithContentsOfURL:[NSURL fileURLWithPath:@"/tmp/"]];
[newArchive updateEntries:
                     [ZZArchiveEntry archiveEntryWithFileName:@"first.text"
                                                    dataBlock:^(NSError** error)
                                                              return [@"hello, world" dataUsingEncoding:NSUTF8StringEncoding];

Updating an existing zip file:

ZZMutableArchive* oldArchive = [ZZMutableArchive archiveWithContentsOfURL:[NSURL fileURLWithPath:@"/tmp/"]];
[oldArchive updateEntries:
 [oldArchive.entries arrayByAddingObject:
  [ZZArchiveEntry archiveEntryWithFileName:@"second.text"
                                 dataBlock:^(NSError** error)
                                           return [@"bye, world" dataUsingEncoding:NSUTF8StringEncoding];

Advanced uses: Recipes

API references: References


  • Build: Xcode 4.4 and later.
  • Link: Only system libraries; no third-party libraries needed.
    • ApplicationServices.framework (Mac OS X) or ImageIO.framework (iOS)
    • Foundation.framework
    • libz.dylib
  • Run: Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion) or iOS 5.0 and later.



zipzap is licensed with the BSD license.


Bitcoin: 1HUFjghYhvrpCWKAYD4x1ihE3fM4VqNL5H

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