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#64 in Data structures

Download history 9/week @ 2021-08-09 11/week @ 2021-08-16 25/week @ 2021-08-23 4/week @ 2021-08-30 2/week @ 2021-09-06 16/week @ 2021-09-13 3/week @ 2021-09-20 24/week @ 2021-09-27 17/week @ 2021-10-04 16/week @ 2021-10-11 58/week @ 2021-10-18 20/week @ 2021-10-25 53/week @ 2021-11-01 56/week @ 2021-11-08 57/week @ 2021-11-15 89/week @ 2021-11-22

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Used in 10 crates (7 directly)

Custom license

3.5K SLoC

zerovec crates.io

Zero-copy vector abstractions over byte arrays.

zerovec enable vectors of multibyte types to be backed by a byte array, abstracting away issues including memory alignment and endianness.

This crate has three main types:

The first two are intended as drop-in replacements for Vec<T> in Serde structs serialized with a format supporting a borrowed byte buffer, like Bincode. The third is indended as a replacement for HashMap or LiteMap. Clients upgrading to ZeroVec, VarZeroVec, or ZeroMap benefit from zero heap allocations when deserializing read-only data.

This crate has two optional features: serde and yoke. serde allows serializing and deserializing zerovec's abstractions via serde, and yoke enables implementations of Yokeable from the yoke crate.


zerovec is designed for fast deserialization from byte buffers with zero memory allocations while minimizing performance regressions for common vector operations.

Benchmark results on x86_64:

Operation Vec<T> zerovec
Deserialize vec of 100 u32 233.18 ns 14.120 ns
Compute sum of vec of 100 u32 (read every element) 8.7472 ns 10.775 ns
Binary search vec of 1000 u32 50 times 442.80 ns 472.51 ns
Deserialize vec of 100 strings 7.3740 μs* 1.4495 μs
Count chars in vec of 100 strings (read every element) 747.50 ns 955.28 ns
Binary search vec of 500 strings 10 times 466.09 ns 790.33 ns

* This result is reported for Vec<String>. However, Serde also supports deserializing to Vec<&str>; this gives 1.8420 μs, much faster than Vec<String> but a bit slower than zerovec.

Operation HashMap<K,V> LiteMap<K,V> ZeroMap<K,V>
Deserialize a small map 2.72 μs 1.28 μs 480 ns
Deserialize a large map 50.5 ms 18.3 ms 3.74 ms
Look up from a small deserialized map 49 ns 42 ns 54 ns
Look up from a large deserialized map 51 ns 155 ns 213 ns

Small = 16 elements, large = 131,072 elements. Maps contain <String, String>.

The benches used to generate the above table can be found in the benches directory in the project repository. zeromap benches are named by convention, e.g. zeromap/deserialize/small, zeromap/lookup/large. The type is appended for baseline comparisons, e.g. zeromap/lookup/small/hashmap.


  • serde: enables Serde Serialize/Deserialize impls for ZeroVec and VarZeroVec.


Serialize and deserialize a struct with ZeroVec and VarZeroVec with Bincode:

use zerovec::{ZeroVec, VarZeroVec};

// This example requires the "serde" feature
#[derive(serde::Serialize, serde::Deserialize)]
pub struct DataStruct<'data> {
    nums: ZeroVec<'data, u32>,
    strs: VarZeroVec<'data, str>,

let data = DataStruct {
    nums: ZeroVec::from_slice(&[211, 281, 421, 461]),
    strs: VarZeroVec::from(&["hello", "world"] as &[_]),
let bincode_bytes = bincode::serialize(&data)
    .expect("Serialization should be successful");
assert_eq!(54, bincode_bytes.len());

let deserialized: DataStruct = bincode::deserialize(&bincode_bytes)
    .expect("Deserialization should be successful");
assert_eq!(Some(211), deserialized.nums.first());
assert_eq!(Some("world"), deserialized.strs.get(1));
assert!(matches!(deserialized.nums, ZeroVec::Borrowed(_)));

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