CSA enables enterprises and service providers to improve compression performance without impacting system resources. As a high-speed, specialized coprocessor, CSA provides high-performance compression at the central site. It is able to receive multiple compression streams coming from remote Cisco routers using Cisco IOS software-based compression. The CSA minimizes overall cost for data compression by integrating hardware- and software-based Cisco IOS data compression solutions. The CSA also maximizes router performance by off-loading compression algorithms from the central processing engines of the router performance by off-loading compression algorithms from the central processing engines of the RSP7000, 7200, and 7500, allowing them to remain dedicated to routing and other specialized tasks.