How to zip and unzip files

The following instructions show how to compress and uncompress a file under the Windows, Mac, and Linux operating environments. Note than under most systems you can select multiple files as well as folders/directories to zip into the same archive.

Zipping a file creates a compressed version of the file that is usually considerably smaller than the original file. The zipped version of the file has a .zip file extension.

Unzipping a file reverses the zip process and extracts the file from the compressed archive.

IMPORTANT: Please be cautious about opening .zip files from unknown e-mail senders because they can contain viruses. Confirm with known senders before opening a .zip file.

WINDOWS ME, XP, VISTA, 7, 8 and SERVER 2003 (or higher)

Compress files (zip files)

  1. Locate the file you want to compress.
  2. Right-click the file; then point to Send to and click Compressed (zipped) folder.

    A new compressed zip file is created in the same location.

Uncompress files (unzip files)

  1. Locate the compressed zip file you want to extract.
  2. Do one of the following:
    • To extract a single file or folder, double-click the zip file to open it; then drag the file or folder from the archive to a new location.
    • To extract the entire contents of the zip file, right-click the zip file; then click Extract All; then follow the instructions on the screen.

Windows 95, 98, 98SE and 2000 do not have built in zip file support, and it is necessary to utilize third-party software to create and extract zip files.

MAC OS X (10–10.4)

Compress files (zip files)

  1. Use Finder to locate the file you want to compress.
  2. Control-click or right-click the file icon; then click Compress [. . .]

    A new compressed zip file is created in the same location.

Uncompress files (unzip files)

  1. Use Finder to locate the compressed zip file you want to extract.
  2. Double-click the file icon.

    The files contained in the archive will be extracted to the same location.

MAC OS X (10.5–LION)

Compress files (zip files)

  1. Use Finder to locate the file you want to compress.
  2. Control-click or right-click the file icon; then click Create Archive of [. . .]

    A new compressed zip file is created in the same location.

Uncompress files (unzip files)

  1. Use Finder to locate the compressed zip file you want to extract.
  2. Double-click the file icon.

    The files contained in the archive will be extracted to the same location.

LINUX

Compress files (zip files)

  1. Open a shell prompt.
  2. Enter the following: zip -r filename.zip filedir

    A new compressed zip file is created in the selected location.

Uncompress files (unzip files)

  1. Open a shell prompt.
  2. Enter the following: unzip filename.zip

    The files contained in the archive will be extracted to the same location as the zip file.

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