While nobody can deny the fact that commercial system maintenance tools or antivirus programs bring more to the table than their freely available competitors in most cases, the situation is completely different when talking about archiving tools – in my opinion, freebies make commercial tools like WinRAR or WinZip look like really bad choices, no matter how you put it.
Fully compatible with all Windows versions currently available to the masses, as well as Windows 8′s pre-release versions, 7-Zip is an excellent tool that can be used even as a basic file manager, but when you need to turn big things into small ones, then this is where this piece of code really shines. This is not exactly a full software review, so I won’t undress this program for you – I am leaving to you this pleasure, but here’s what one should expect…
- Very high compression ratio when using its own 7Z format
- Can compress to/decompress 7z, XZ, BZIP2, GZIP, TAR and ZIP files
- Can only unpack ARJ, CAB, CHM, CPIO, DEB, DMG, FAT, HFS, ISO, LZH, LZMA, MBR, MSI, NSIS, NTFS, RAR, RPM, UDF, VHD, WIM, XAR and Z
- AES-256 encryption available for 7Z and ZIP formats
- Command line version
- File manager tool
- Excellent Windows Shell integration
- Multilanguage support (over 70 languages)
- Much more…
7-Zip is completely free, works like a charm and offers a set of features that most of its users won’t even get to use.
Some may say that the looks of this program didn’t catch up to its features and I guess they would be right. Depending on the compression settings you’re going to use, 7-Zip may need huge amounts of memory, easily exceeding 1 GB.
7-Zip – The Relevant Links